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Do motorcycle helmets cause injuries?

Believe it or not there are many Canadian motorcycle enthusiasts who still believe that helmets cause injuries; however, the facts do not support such claims. According to a university study that looked at 900 motorcycle accidents and 980 that resulted in neck and head injuries, motorcyclists who use helmets suffer less severe and fewer neck and head injuries.

Out of the 980 cases of motorcycle crashes with head and neck injuries, only four of them involved injuries caused by helmets, and all of these injuries were minor wounds that could be resolved with a bandaid. Furthermore, in the four cases of helmet-caused injuries, it was shown that the helmets actually protected the riders from what would have likely been a fatal accident. So, on the rare chance that you are injured by your helmet, it is likely that the resulting minor injuries will be worth the life-saving benefits received.

The study of 900 motorcycle crashes also revealed that the single most important factor in reducing the severity of and preventing neck and head injuries was the use of helmets by both motorcyclists and passengers.

If this is not enough to convince you of the safety of motorcycle helmets, perhaps the following information will. Approximately 80 percent of crashes involving a motorcycle end in death or injury to the motorcycle rider. Wearing a helmet will reduce motorcyclist's risk of dying in a crash by about 29 percent. Motorcyclists without helmets have a 40 percent higher risk of suffering a fatal head injury in a crash.

It could not be any clearer. These statistics prove that motorcyclists who wear helmets are dramatically less likely to be injured or die in a crash. Those who are hurt in a crash, however, will want to save all their medical records to document the full extent of their injuries. This documentation could be very important in seeking claims for the cost of medical care and other damages.

Source: Centers for Disease Control, "Motorcycle Helmets The Facts of Life," accessed Aug. 07, 2015

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