On July 1, 2000, Florida repealed the commonwealth’s motorcycle helmet law. When once all motorcyclists were required to wear a helmet at all times, the law was repealed exempting adults over the age of 21 with medical insurance of $10,000 from having to wear a helmet. In a study conducted the year after the law change, there was a marked 48.6% increase in motorcycle deaths.
While you may not be required to wear a helmet, we strongly suggest that continue doing so. Studies by the CDC consistently show that wearing a helmet reduces the chances of injury and death in a motorcycle crash. Furthermore, not only can wearing a helmet save your life, it can also save you a dollar, or to be exact, as much as $725 per registered motorcycle.
Here are some tips on buying the right helmet:
Standards of safety for helmets are established and regulated by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). Helmets are tested for endurance against impact, retention and penetration, and for wear and resistance. When purchasing a helmet, look for the DOT sticker that ensures adherence to safety regulations.
The most important element of a helmet’s fit is how snugly it sits on your head. Even a helmet with padding should not move without taking your scalp along for the ride. Any extra optional features, such as vents, speakers and noise control inserts, should not interfere with the snug fit of your helmet.
A bright color increases the likelihood you are going to be seen by other vehicles sharing the road. If you choose a dark color instead, add reflective tape or paint fluorescent stripes on the top and sides to increase your visibility.
The right helmet for the right vehicle
All helmets share the common goal of protecting the head from injury, but each sport has a type of helmet that is specifically designed for that purpose:
- Motorcycles — Designed to protect the brain from injury at high speeds, these are heavy and have a large protective shell.
- Bicycles — Designed for speed, these are lighter and have a plastic shell.
- ATV and off-road vehicles — These are designed to cut down on wind and protect the entire head and face.
- Inline skates and skateboards — Designed to protect the back of the head, these have less ventilation and more coverage.
In most cases, once a helmet has endured a high-impact accident, the protective shell is compromised and the helmet needs to be replaced. If you are injured in an accident of any kind, speak to a motorcycle injury lawyer about your right to compensation.