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Helmet requirements loosened for adult ATV drivers

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- North Carolina legislators have agreed to
exempt adult drivers of all-terrain vehicles from helmet and eye
protection requirements while riding on private property.

The Senate approved Wednesday a bill loosening protections in a
2005 law for ATVs 45 minutes after it appeared the measure had been
defeated. The bill now goes to Gov. Beverly Perdue.

The bill initially failed 23-26 after Sen. Bill Purcell of
Laurinburg, who helped pass the 2005 law, said the exemption
would lead to more ATV injuries and deaths. Sen. Buck Newton of
Wilson supported the bill. He said the vote was about deciding how
far government should go in telling adults what to do.

The Senate reconsidered the bill after a recess then passed the
measure on a largely party-line vote favoring Republicans.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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