Motorbike Helmet Safety

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    Helmet Purpose

    • Motorbike helmets all have the same essential purpose. In the event of an accident, the helmet protects the rider's head from the shock of sudden blows incurred when falling. Some helmets also extend protection to the rider’s face and neck. First devised in the 1950s, helmets have been consistently improved during the succeeding decades.

    Types of Helmet

    • Various types of motorbike helmets are available. A full face helmet protects the entire head, covering the back of the skull to the bottom of the chin. A plastic face shield that can be moved up and down protects the face from debris while allowing you to see. The open face helmet protects down to the back of the skull, but it does not protect the face. Riders can also wear goggles or glasses to protect their eyes.

    Safety Facts

    • Wearing a protective helmet is essential for safety. Statistics have shown that a rider's chances of surviving a crash are drastically lower when not wearing a helmet. For example, in evaluating the repeal of helmet laws in Kentucky and Louisiana, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that helmets are 65 percent effective in preventing brain injuries during a crash. The study also found that helmets reduce the risk of death by 29 percent, and they are 67 percent effective in preventing brain injuries.

    How to Wear a Helmet

    • To get the full protection benefits of using a helmet, it must fit your head snugly. The helmet should not shake in any way as you move around. A helmet that is too loose can fall off during a crash. Helmets should comfortably squeeze the top and back of your head. A full face helmet should also wrap around your jaw and cheeks. When purchasing a new helmet, you can have the associate on duty properly fit the device to your head. You can also have helmets reshaped for your fitting specifications.

    Other Information

    • Motorbike helmets are required by law in 20 states and the District of Columbia. Twenty-seven states have laws that require riders of motor-powered cycles to wear helmets while three states do not require their use. Some auto insurance companies will not insure riders who do not wear helmets or have provisions in their contracts rewarding those who do.

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