Helmetgate: Warrior Statement, Current Update
The news has slowed around Helmetgate, but just when you think it’s over, something new happens. While Cascade has been taking in, and fixing up, their R helmets at a rapid pace, Warrior had been relatively quiet on the issue. They said something was in the works, and that they were confident the issue would be fixed soon. Other than that, not too much… until now.
See below for a couple updates on the Helmetgate situation.
Warrior Issues Statement
Here is Warrior’s updated statement on their Regulator Helmet NOCSAE recertification process:
Warrior received the decertification notice from NOCSAE regarding its Regulator helmet on November 24, 2014. NOCSAE based its decision on concerns with the QA/QC procedures at Warrior’s supplier; specifically, that not enough helmets were tested to statistically prove compliance with NOCSAE’s standards. NOCSAE indicated that Warrior would need to pass an SEI QA/QC audit before certification could be reinstated. Warrior immediately scheduled an expedited audit with SEI, including onsite inspections at Warrior and at Warrior’s helmet supplier, which were completed in mid-December with passing test results immediately provided to NOCSAE.
Simultaneously, Warrior expedited the necessary internal and external testing of its Regulator II helmet which was developed as part of Warrior’s goal to continuously improve its product line and which offers a slight modification in design. Warrior wanted to aggressively make all efforts to have NOCSAE-approved helmets to supply to our many loyal customers. External testing of the Regulator II was performed at ICS, an independent, NOCSAE certified lab with passing test results immediately provided to NOCSAE.
With all of the required testing and audit data and information for both helmets provided to NOCSAE by the end of December, Warrior was authorized to commence production of the Regulator II helmets, which Warrior did and also developed requested sticker copy related to the helmet’s useful life that was approved by NOCSAE earlier this week, which should allow Warrior to ship the NOCSAE-certified Regulator II helmets starting immediately. Warrior is currently waiting to hear back from NOCSAE on final confirmation for shipment. Warrior is also still waiting for NOCSAE’s approval related to the fulfillment of its required efforts for re-certification of the Regulator helmet.
Warrior is continuing to aggressively press for the certification to which it is entitled, and is hopeful that NOCSAE will address this important issue soon. In the meantime, we appreciate your understanding and continued patience, and anticipate an answer very soon.
Basically, Warrior had their old Regulator helmets retested and they expect them to be recertified shortly. They also had their newer Regulator II helmets tested and expect those to be certified as well. According to a Warrior rep, the Regulator II is a slightly updated version of the Regulator helmet and is out this year. There are no lawsuits involving Warrior and NOCSAE, and an official recertification announcement is expected by Warrior soon.
More STX Helmets Hit The ‘Net
We have seen more and more Stallion helmets online and in the hands of players and people seem to be coming around to the new look. An updated facemask should also help in the perception department. The custom design and color options are impressive and we know for sure that at least one D3 college team will be wearing them this year. I’d expect a couple of D1 schools to join that list sooner rather than later.
Cascade Recertifying Rs Quickly
Cascade has been turning around the R helmets that have been sent in for recertification rapidly. I have not heard of any long wait times, and I’ve seen a number of recertified helmets. The sticker functions as it should. I should probably send in my own helmets, huh?
And that’s the thing, there’s no excuse not to send your helmet in to get fixed up. Cascade is covering all the costs, and if your helmet needs a tune up, it will get one. And you’ll get it back in about two weeks (or less). That’s impressive. What else is impressive is that Cascade is probably spending a million dollars plus on shipping alone. They are definitely making this right.
Helmetgate End Game
It seems like Helmetgate, the scourge that could end lacrosse as we know it, is having a smaller, and more positive, impact than originally anticipated. While many out there took a trip to heart attack city, it looks like both helmets could be wearable once again at any level, and that head protection could have improved, if for no other reason than NOCSAE will begin their own testing of helmets in the near future.
STX is a welcome force to the helmet market if they deliver a protective product, and it looks like they are doing just that. I still haven’t tried one out, but it’s a near-term goal of mine. There is now more choice, and if all the choices are good, then that brings a greater chance that people can find the right helmet for them… and I’m all for that.