While all areas of the body are susceptible to injury in a motorcycle accident, your head is one of the most at-risk body parts. In a 2016 survey, 63% of Colorado motorcyclists involved in fatal accidents were not wearing helmets.
Here are just three ways helmets can greatly decrease the risk of getting injured:
1. Prevent brain damage and death
Helmets are designed to reduce injury and keep you safe. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that helmets are 67% effective in preventing brain injuries and 37% effective in preventing motorcycle fatalities. In addition, many helmets now have a Multi-Directional Impact Protection System (MIPS), which is a layer that allows the helmet to rotate slightly while keeping the head in place and the brain safe. MIPS is designed to protect your head even if you hit the ground at an angle, reducing the risk of a head injury.
2. Provide eye protection
In Colorado, riders age 18 or older are not legally required to wear a helmet. However, all riders must wear some form of eye protection. Helmets with full-face shields or modular visors can be used to satisfy this requirement. While the full-face style provides the most protection, modular visors can flip up to open the front of the helmet for eating, drinking or talking at rest stops. On the road, wearing eye protection helps keep the sun, wind and other debris out of your eyes.
3. Increase your visibility
Accidents often happen because other drivers do not see motorcyclists. The size and shape of a motorcycle can make it difficult to spot. A driver’s blind spot is also more likely to hide a motorcycle due to the vehicle’s small size. Wearing a helmet can increase your visibility to other drivers. Many motorcycle helmets come in a variety of bright colors that can help drivers become aware of your presence on the road.
The cost of an accident
Sustaining a head injury after a motorcycle accident can temporarily halt your daily activities, but it may also have permanent consequences. Ambulance rides, emergency room operations and ongoing medical bills due to health complications can be costly results of an accident.
But financial expenses aren’t the only problems you may have to deal with. Physical effects of a head injury can cause:
- Confusion and disorientation
- Behavioral impairments
- Mood changes
- Permanent physical and mental disability
Accidents and injury aren’t always preventable. If you or a loved one obtained a head injury due to a motorcycle accident, seeking legal assistance can help you deal with the aftermath of a crash and subsequent injury.