Riding motorcycles can be an exciting way to hit the road, get some fresh air, and add some adventure into your life. While they are often known as being dangerous, if they are rode in a safe manner, they can be an excellent way to get some exercise and improve mental outlook.
A combination of education, knowledge of traffic laws, and basic common sense can go a long way in helping to reduce the amount of fatalities from motorcycle accidents on a yearly basis, including the importance of wearing a helmet. In today’s post, we will be discussing how a helmet can improve your chances of survival if you ever find yourself involved in a motorcycle accident, along with other motorcycle safety tips. If you have any further questions or have experienced an injury in a motorcycle accident due to another person’s negligence, please give our personal injury lawyers a call at Woods & Thompson, P.A. in Minneapolis today.
Minnesota’s Motorcycle Helmet Law
Under Minnesota state law, all motorcyclists under the age of 18 must wear a helmet. Additionally, all motorcyclists who have their learner’s permit, regardless of how old they are, must also wear a helmet.
Yet, just because you may have the choice of wearing a motorcycle helmet doesn’t mean that it is a good idea to ride without one. In fact, years of research has confirmed that helmets keep motorcyclists much safer than those who opt to ride without wearing one.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), wearing a helmet:
- Reduces the risk of death in a motorcycle crash by 37 percent
- Reduces the risk of experiencing a head injury in a crash by 69 percent
- Saves around 1,859 lives a year
If every motorcyclist wore a helmet, it could save the U.S. more than one billion dollars per year in economic losses (not to mention that it would also prevent immense suffering on the part of the motorcycle crash victims and their loved ones).
Unfortunately, despite these statistics, only 71 percent of motorcycle operators in the U.S. wore a helmet throughout the year. While many motorcyclists feel as though helmets take away from the thrill of riding, don’t look great, or feel bothersome, the decision to ride without a helmet frequently turns out to be a costly and deadly one.
Effectiveness of Motorcycle Helmets
Many studies over the years have shown that motorcycle helmets save lives and help to reduce the severity of injuries experienced in a motorcycle crash. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has even indicated that head injuries are the leading cause of fatalities in a motorcycle accident, many of which could have been prevented by wearing a helmet. Motorcyclists involved in an accident without wearing a helmet are also three times more likely to suffer from a traumatic brain injury (TBI) than a rider who wears their helmet.
Safest Type of Motorcycle Helmet
Keep in mind that if you will need to select the correct type of helmet to truly protect yourself in the occurrence of an accident. When shopping, make sure that you have a DOT-compliant helmet, as these are the only helmets that can reliably prevent injury and death in a motorcycle accident.
Non-compliant helmets are not manufactured for highway use and lack the durability and impact absorption capability needed in order to truly protect a rider. You will also want to try on a helmet before making the purchase in order to make sure that it fits the entirety of your head. There are many excellent options and styles available, making it easy to find a great option that suits your look, comfort level, and so forth.
The Bottom Line
Wearing a helmet can save your life. It can also prevent you and your loved ones from years of suffering and costly medical bills that are experienced when a head injury is sustained. Countless studies have shown this. So next time you plan on hitting the highway, please be sure to strap on your helmet.
If you have suffered injuries in a motorcycle accident that was caused by another person’s negligent actions, then you may have the right to substantial compensation. Contact our professional personal injury lawyers at Woods & Thompson, P.A. in Minneapolis today for a consultation to learn about your rights and legal options.