How Effective Are Helmets In Preventing Motorcyclist Death?
When you think of motorcycles, you may picture riding on an open road and experiencing a thrilling sense of adventure. But unfortunately, while motorcycles look cool and exciting, they are among the most dangerous motor vehicle transportation means on our roads. In 2015, 88,000 people were injured on roads in the US, and, unfortunately, more than 5,000 motorcyclists were killed in 2017.
The NHTSA asserts that wearing helmets saved the lives of almost 1,900 people in the US. The organization also states that 750 more lives could have been saved across the nation if all motorcycle accident victims had worn their helmets. The number of fatalities connected to motorcycle accidents has more than doubled since 1997 when motorcycle crash deaths were 2,116. Laws that enforce the wearing of helmets can not only decrease injuries and death but can save taxpayers money.
If you’re thinking of getting a motorcycle or have a loved one considering buying one, here are some things you should know about the effectiveness of wearing a helmet.
Helmets Can Reduce Healthcare Costs And Save Lives
A 2012 report from the Government Accountability Office asserts that mandates requiring all cyclists to wear helmets are the only effective strategy for reducing motorcycle-related deaths. There were ten times as many motorcyclist fatalities in states without helmet laws as in states that enforced helmet laws in 2017.
Every year, motorcycle accidents cost nearly $13 billion in economic damages and $66 billion in society-related harm, according to data from 2010. Compared to other automobile accidents, the costs of motorcycle crashes are disproportionately caused by severe injuries and deaths. Motorcycle helmets currently prevent around $17 billion in society-related harm, but an additional $8 billion on societal harm could be prevented if everyone who rode a motorcycle wore a helmet.
If you or a loved one have been in a motorcycle accident, it is important to get legal assistance right away. A motorcycle accident lawyer can help you gather all the necessary evidence after a motorcycle accident so you can receive a fair settlement. The settlement can cover damages to your motorcycle as well as the pain and suffering you may have experienced after the accident. A qualified attorney may also be able to provide you with tips to stay safe on your motorcycle, including using a high-quality helmet to ensure your head and neck are protected if you’re ever in a motorcycle accident.
Motorcycle Accidents vs. Car Accidents
Motorcyclists were 28 times more likely to be killed in a vehicular crash than occupants in a passenger automobile. As a result, in 2012, the state of Michigan repealed the statewide all-rider laws.
The University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute asserts that there would have been a 21% reduction in motorcycle-related deaths if the helmet law was still in place. However, in the remainder of that year, after the enforcement of the helmet repeal, only 74% of motorcycle riders involved in crashes were wearing helmets compared to 98% in the same period during the previous four years.
What Americans Think About Motorcycle Laws
Over 82% of Americans favor state laws that require motorcyclists to wear their helmets when operating a motorcycle. Helmets can lower the risk of head injury by 69% and reduce the chances of fatality by 42%, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
When accidents happen, motorcyclists need safe head protection to prevent head injuries, one of the leading causes of disability and death in the US. It is important to note that while motorcycle accidents are extremely expensive and more likely to occur than passenger car accidents, many of these collisions are preventable.
The best way for state officials to save the lives of their citizens and save taxpayer money is to keep a universal helmet law active. For example, the US could have prevented more than $1 billion in costs if everyone who operated a motorcycle wore a helmet every year.
By Leland D’ Bengtson [Lawyer Monthly]