What are the limitations of a bicycle helmet in a bicycle crash? Do bicycle helmets protect riders from the risk of serious injuries including traumatic brain injury? The fact is that helmets offer some protection from serious head trauma and can reduce the risk by up to 85%. However, there are many variables to consider. These include the construction of the helmet, the point of impact, and the speed of impact.
Bicycle Crash Fatalities in the United States
818 cyclists died in accidents in 2015. In 2016, that number rose 1% to 835. This is the highest number of fatalities recorded since 1991. 87% of those who died in 2016 were over the age of 20; a rate that has risen more than three-fold since 1975. The data further shows that the number of cyclists under the age of 20 who died in a bicycle crash has decreased by 87%.
Helmets are Saving Lives
One reason for these dramatically different rate changes is helmet usage. Of those who died in 2016, 51%, and possibly more, were not wearing helmets. Cyclists are four times more likely to suffer a fatal head injury if they are not wearing a helmet at the time of their bicycle accident.
In 2012, the Centers for Disease Control conducted a thorough study on helmet usage. The results showed that only 29% of adults always wore a helmet while riding a bicycle. By comparison, 42% of children always wore their helmets. That rate rose to 90% when the child was riding with an adult who always wore their helmet.
Helmet Safety Standards & the Real World
The US Consumer Products Safety Commission regulates bicycle helmet safety standards. These include standards for lab drops, strap strength jerk, rolloff, and coverage. In theory, the higher the rating, the greater the potential protection. Variables such as speed of impact, point of impact, alcohol consumption, etc. can all diminish bicycle helmet effectiveness. Moreover, bicycle helmets cover a limited area. This means the rider remains unprotected in a bicycle crash against potentially lethal injuries to the abdomen and extremities.
Brad Pistotnik Law is a bicycle crash lawyer, back injury attorney, lawyer, and abogado who represents clients in Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Texas, Florida, Missouri, and Illinois seeking accident settlement for personal injuries caused by automobile accidents, and the survivors of those who suffer a wrongful death. Whether the accident occurred in Wichita, Liberal, Garden City,, Manhattan, Olsburg, Leonardville, Riley, Fort Riley, Chapman, White City, Alta Vista, Wilsey, Council Grove, Hope, Wamego, Idana, Manchester, Abilene, Salina, Geneseo, Little River, Lyons, Ellsworth, Gypsum, Solomon, Minneapolis, Chase, Radium, Hudson, Belpre, Macksville, Trousdale, Luka, Turon, Sylvia, Stafford, Ellinwood, Alden, Lewis, Plymell, Pierceville, Mansfield, Ryus, Hickok, Big Bow, Manter, Satanta, Deerfield, Colby, Brewser, St Francis, Kanorado, Goodland, McCook, Curtis, Brady, Cozad, North Platte, Hershey, Ogallala, Tryon, Arnold, Ringgold, Arthur, or elsewhere in these states, our accident attorneys can help you recover the compensation you need to recover from your bicycle crash.
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