Helmet law: To wear or not a helmet.

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Wear or not wear a helmet is recurrent  subject inside the motorcyclist community.  It’s not just about the Florida’s law, but it’s mainly about how much value your life and your head have when you are riding your motorcycle. The experience to have the wind on our faces without a helmet, freedom and etc doesn’t make sense when the numbers run against the freedom and talk about death.

Team USA2Ride has been seen wearing NEXX NorthAmerica helmets all time, because we believe on their safety, quality and technology. But most of all, because we believe in safety gear, specially a good helmet.

We have tons of reasons to wear a helmet, the best of them? We want to be here and ride everywhere, meet everybody, and spread the word of safety, conscious and respect for the life. You can read more about kind of helmets, how to choose one, models and much more here:

Helmet… Use it or don’t use it? Here is the answer

Or  here:

The most important safety gear: Helmet

Also here:

Florida has the most motorcycle fatalities in US

 

It’s an endless topic. The article below from FloridaToday has many information about safety and helmets:

gJRTGMuBy , FLORIDA TODAY – May 14, 2016

Tom Taylor has years in the saddle of a motorcycle.That experience in all kinds of traffic and weather – plus a scary hit-and-run wreck – buys him the knowledge to make his own decisions on wearing a helmet, he says.That, and the state of Florida. Taylor says in some cases he rides with a helmet but sometimes goes helmet-less, depending on the situation. But he emphasizes that his choice is personal and doesn’t think it’s for everyone to make.

“If I’m comfortable on the roads and the people I’m with, I choose not to wear a helmet, but saying that, I feel inexperienced riders should wear a helmet until they get that riding skill to a point where they’re comfortable to make the decision,” said Taylor, who was hit by a drunken driver in 2011 and was injured without so much as a scratched helmet.

 

Since 2000, it’s been legal in Florida to ride without a helmet, provided the rider:

  • Is at least 21
  • Holds medical insurance coverage of at least $10,000

All this two-wheeled freedom doesn’t necessarily add up to higher fatalities, according to the Florida Highway Patrol. But it does up the risk of serious injury, medical experts say.

“I think a lot of people think that a lot of fatalities are going to be without the helmets, but there are a lot of crashes that are unsurvivable because of the nature of the crash,” said Florida Highway Patrol Public Affairs Officer Kim Montes. “There is no trend one way or another.”

Statewide in 2014, according to FHP, 450 motorcycle drivers or passengers died in wrecks, with 210 of those confirmed to have not been wearing a helmet. In 2013 there were 462 combined fatalities with 216 confirmed to have not been wearing a helmet. Montes noted that those numbers are higher than in many states due to the fact that motorcyclists “can ride year-round” due to the warmer weather.

In Brevard, nine of 14 motorcyclists killed in 2013 wore a helmet. In 2014, it was three of five. In 2015, it was three of 12. Across the central Florida counties of Brevard, Seminole, Volusia, Lake, Orange and Osceola, the ratios were about the same:

  • 2013: 57 deaths, 32 with a helmet
  • 2014: 50 deaths, 23 with a helmet
  • 2015: 62 deaths, 31 with a helmet

According to Rob Spivey, trauma program manager at Health First’s Holmes Regional Medical Center in Melbourne, more than 70 studies since the year 2000 “support that the use of motorcycle helmets in decreasing the incidence of lethal head injuries, death and non-lethal head injuries related to the use” of helmets for motorcyclists.

“Helmets are designed to both absorb impact and extend the time of impact. During a crash, the body and the head are traveling at forward speeds. This created energy is proportionate to speed. The higher the speed equates to more force that is generated,” Spivey said in an email to FLORIDA TODAY. At a meeting of the Brevard County Chapter of the ABATE of Florida motorcycle rights group in Cocoa recently, some discussed exactly why they don’t wear helmets.

“My right, mainly,” said Rik Venerable, president of the chapter. “After 41 years of riding without a helmet, it’s hard to transition to wearing a helmet. It’s something that you have to get used to. I don’t condemn those that do.” “It’s a part of freedom. Feeling free and unencumbered,” added Phil Nicosi of Indian Harbour Beach, a member of the group. According to Montes, the Florida Highway Patrol supports the right for motorcyclists to wear helmets.

“We believe it’s a personal choice, and that’s why the legislators enacted that law,” she said.

Even Spivey acknowledges that in some crashes helmets won’t work, though he maintains that helmets do provide more safety.

“As with any safety device, the design is limited by ergonomics and functionality,” said Spivey. “There are events in which the energy generated by the crash is so great that no safety device can completely mitigate injury. However, helmets have been proven to reduce injury significantly in both clinical medicine and research studies.

Riders wearing helmets

Some riders say they take no chances.

“I wear a helmet 100 percent of the time I ride. There are too many factors that are not under control of the motorcycle rider,” said Rick Teresi of Palm Bay. “Other drivers’ lack of attention to their surroundings create deadly situations for those of us on two wheels.”

“I always wear a helmet. You could trip walking on a sidewalk hit your head and possibly die or be seriously injured,” added Searphiel Goss. “Now add speed with a crash and possibly being hit by a car and your chances of death or horrible injury are high. It’s not worth the risk.”

And one woman even told FLORIDA TODAY that her husband was saved by wearing his helmet while driving.

“My husband was in a motorcycle accident a few years ago, that involved sliding for about 100 feet, essentially on his face. His full helmet (with face shield) did its job admirably,” said Tracy Howard of Melbourne. “That, along with other protective gear, saved him from what could have potentially been much worse.

Though Montes and FHP support the right of motorcyclists to not wear a helmet, she notes that they “encourage people to wear all safety equipment.”

The debate as to whether or not motorcyclists should be permitted to ride without helmets continues nationwide. Currently, 19 states have laws requiring all motorcyclists to wear helmets, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Three states (Iowa, Illinois and New Hampshire) have no laws mandating that any riders wear helmets. Spivey feels there really shouldn’t be much of a debate.

“Several national studies have shown an increase in traumatic brain injuries and fatalities in areas where helmet laws have been repealed,” Spivey added. “There are standards that have been developed based on these outcomes (of motorcycle crashes) and research to help match helmets for their intended use.”

All the article here.


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