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Old 02-08-2001, 07:36 PM   #31
luvmyvfr
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Default Re: Helmet Law Repeal Stats

Also as an RN and having written a research paper on helmet effectiveness, and being pro-helmet, I must offer this: you can't accept one years statistics as gospel. Also, you should know that a helmet is designed to protect your head from an impact of 14.4 mph or less. That's travelling 7mph and hitting something going 7mph the opposite direction. That's the extent of the engineering. That said, I would happily have 14 mph taken off any impact my head might take, if I should go rubber-side up, or worse. Plus, it keeps the bugs out of your eyes. If someone injures their head in a motorcycle accident bad enough to go to a hospital for, my experience has been that they (1) Die, (2) Have the mental capabilities of a small child, or less for the rest of their life.
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Old 02-08-2001, 07:37 PM   #32
luvmyvfr
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Default Re: Helmet Law Repeal Stats

Oh, and the bathtub statistic is true, but only if your over 65 or thereabouts...
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Old 02-08-2001, 08:52 PM   #33
E-dog
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Default Re: Helmet Law Repeal Stats

I felt strong enough to write a paper on this topic for school, so here it is...





I Save Your Noodle







How can a thin piece of foam and plastic save your life? I find it hard to believe that certain people choose not to where motorcycle helmets in this world. I have been around long enough to understand what safety means. Anything that will help me survive better in a traumatic event, is something I would willingly accept. No force in the human body can prevent their head from hitting an object at even 15mph. Why not have some extra protection that would help deal with the impact?

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, In 1993, helmet use in the states with all-rider helmet laws resulted in 515 lives saved, 2,035 moderate to serious injuries prevented and more than $513 million saved. Another 225 lives could have been saved if the other 25 states had all-rider helmet laws. Helmet laws also reduce serious injury, particularly costly head injuries, the leading cause of death for motorcyclists. A single head-injured motorcyclist can cost a state more than $2 million over a lifetime. Sometimes you have to experience a head trauma to respect what helmets protect.

Sliding towards a curb at 70mph at eye level, tends to make me appreciate the law that forced me to wear a helmet. My family and I looked at my damaged helmet in horror. Deep gouges and scratches, tattoo my empty shell of protection. My full face shield, looked like someone ground my face into a sharpening stone. I try not to think of what my face would have looked like with out a securely fit helmet.

Recently, I spent some time in a local hospital. My friend clipped a guard rail with his handle bars while riding. On the day of his accident, he asked me if I could load his broken bike up for him at the scene of the accident. There were marks on the ground where his body had slid 50 yards. The bike was sliding next to him into the cliff. Both the bike and my friend took a 20 foot drop into a ravine. I could not believe he had survived such a violent accident with only a broken arm and sprained ankle. After taking a long look at his badly damaged helmet, I can not imagine if he had not worn one. For sure, his face would have been scared for life. A chunk of fiber glass was ripped from his helmet; how would a bare scull deal with that sort of abuse?

After reading an article that describes full face helmets as giving riders a false sense of invulnerability, I had to laugh. My helmet cost over 550 dollars. My helmet is too expensive to take chances with. I am not going to take excessive risks and partake in dangerous riding habits because my face and head are covered. It hurts when you fall. With or with out a helmet, common sense will go a long way to determine that helmets can only help if fitted the correct way.

The helmet is designed to absorb shock by partial destruction of the shell and liner. Is the scull designed to take mass amounts of abuse? If my skull has a choice, I would want what little protection that is provided. My owners instructions clearly states that no helmet can protect the wearer against all possible impact. Not warranty or representation is made as to this productÂ’s ability to protect the user from any injury or death, the user assumes all risks. The consumer information about the product is blunt and to the point. No one is guaranteeing that you will live a longer life with a helmet. Many believe that helmets impair your vision and sound. I have been hit in the face with a bug before. I did not care for that stinging sensation of a bumble bee. A full face shield sure does a nice job of avoiding unwanted insects. It feels nice to have something covering your ears. The sound of whistling wind at free way speed can injure your hearing, in the long run. If you had no helmet, it would be a loud painful ride.

Some people should experience a high impact with a stationary object, to rethink their opinion about helmet safety. I swear by helmets and have seen their magic. The topic of having to wear a helmet is something I will never have trouble understanding. I hope to convince a few riders that think a good bit of hair spray protecting their brain from an impact with the ground is a bad thing. Aside from getting helmet hair, helmets are designed to benefit the rider, not hinder them. I retain my original face structure, thanks to an invention called the helmet. The important fact to remember is that you have a choice to take the protection and use it. If you do not want to be injured in a motorcycle wreck, then do not ride motorcycles.





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Old 02-08-2001, 08:57 PM   #34
BlownAwayIG
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Default Re: Helmet Law Repeal Stats

Didn't we just do the Helmet-No Helmet story not to long ago. This is like Watching Jerry Springer or Maury on ratings day.



A couple of questions though:

Where does it say you have the constitutional right to or not to wear a helmet? Everybodies always going on about their rights...The Governement says you have to have a license to operate a vehicle, no one about that. The govenment mandates safer vehicles,,,no one about that.



Everyone wants the government to do something about Healthcare, the costs, prescriptions prices...



Everyone wants the government to keep gas (crude oil) prices down...



Everyone wants the govenment to keep American Jobs,,,American.



Everyone wants the government to do for them what will benefit them financially, healthwise, employment related,,,



Yet let the government say you Have to wear a helmet when you ride a motorcycle, FOR YOUR OWN SAFETY...and people go brain dead. You'd swear we were talking about abortion, human rights, gun control,,,



It's just a HELMET...Is it too much to ask...Now there should be some conssessions that go along with it just like with cars...Damaged, worn or old helmets should get replacement coverage from insurance companies, Buying the safest, most up to date helmet should get a rebate from insurance.

Face shields shouldn't cost $30-60, and should get a deductible like windshields...Why does a High quality Helmet cost $300-500??? Manufacturer's liability???



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Old 02-08-2001, 09:30 PM   #35
Gabe
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Default Why we need helmet laws

This is a reprint from the last time we went through this. Abe Froman is not allowed to reply.





WHY WE NEED HELMET LAWS



The most contentious and emotional debate among American motorcyclists is the one over helmet laws. Should society, working through a democratically elected state legislature, require motorcyclists to wear an approved safety helmet?



The US Supreme Court has made many decisions about which rights US citizens have which government may not abridge. Such rights include reproduction, interstate travel, right to contract, right to work, etc. Although these rights are not mentioned in the US Constitution, they are nevertheless protected, since the Ninth Amendment of the Bill Of Rights says that rights not "enumerated" in other parts of the constitution are still rights.



But, just because a person does a thing does not make it a right. Homosexual sodomy, for instance, although it affects nobody except the er, pitcher and catcher, is illegal in many states, since the Supreme Court did not hold such a practice as a "right" like other rights.



So what makes a right a right? The concurring opinion in Griswold v. Connecticut tries to determine "which rights are fundamental..." To do this, Justices Warren, Goldberg and Brennan say courts must "look to the traditions and collective conscience of our people to determine whether a principle is so rooted there as to be ranked as fundamental." Once the right is recognized, the court should then decide if that right is "of such a character that it cannot be denied without violating those fundamental principles of liberty and justice which lie at the base of all our civil and political institutions..."



So we are faced with a two-tiered determination. First, the action in question must be rooted in the collective mind of our society as being fundamental. That is, a reasonable, average American (whoever THAT is) must agree, totally, that it is a fundamental right to do this thing. Next, this right cannot be denied without being an egregious attack on personal liberty.



That's why states cannot force welfare mothers to be sterilized. No reasonable person would feel that the right to reproduce is not a basic human right, and limiting that right would be outrageous. Can you imagine having to get a "sex license" from your city hall? Or requiring obese people to present ration card to their grocery clerks? Such notions are repugnant to anybody with even a small amount of respect for other's rights.



Let's apply this motorcycling without a helmet. Is feeling the wind in your thinning scalp at 70 MPH a right rooted in our collective mind? Would a reasonable person, without a moment's hesitation, agree that you have a right to endanger your thin (and not to copious) skull like that?



But lets say this mythical reasonable man did such a thing. Does limiting this right outrage our sensibilities, or notions of freedom? It sure does for some people. But not enough to universally overturn helmet laws, or even the majority of the people it affects, i.e. motorcyclists. Even in states without helmet laws, over half the riders wear helmets. Presumably, if helmet laws outrageously infringed on personal liberty, there would be a massive outcry from motorcyclists of every ilk, as well as the public at large.



Continuing to play devil's advocate, let's say going helmetless IS a fundamental right. Can a state infringe on a fundamental right? The answer is yes, if the state has a compelling interest.



Here is the heart of the debate. One side says helmet laws don't do a thing for the state, and the other side says they save the state money and save human lives. Who has the heavier burden of proof?



I would say the anti-helmet law people do. If the state can save even $10,000 (to pick a random number) by requiring helmets, I would say that that is compelling enough to override the right of motorcyclists to go helmet less. Can ABATE honestly say helmet laws don't save states even a minimal amount of money? Even anti-helmet law websites acknowledge fewer head injuries in helmet law states. I would say even a realitively small amount of savings negates a person's almst indetectible right to feel that breeze on the pate.



But pro-helmet advocates have an easier job. The "right" we are sacrificing is not one exercised by reasonable people. Would you really rather smack your head hard on something without a helmet? If you posed that question to 100 people, how many would prefer it au naturel? It's just not reasonable to say it's better to not wear the minumum of head protection.



There's a second argument the anti-helmet folks use. If we let them take away this "right", they will keep restricting other rights until we can't ride motorcycles at all. Like appeasing Hitler, the "safety nazis" will just have their appetites for biker rights stoked, and hunger for even more. Funny how much this sounds like NRA rhetoric, no?



This argument operates on an assumption that I think is hard to prove. The assumption is that the "safety nazis" have an agenda to totally eliminate motorcycling. I have not seen any convincing proof of that. Has any state ever banned motorcycles? Have there been bills in Congress to eliminate motorcycles? Is there any official DOT, EPA or CalTrans advocating elimination of the motorcycle? Wouldn't motorcycles have been banned a long time ago if that was the case?



The only agenda "safety nazis" have is to reduce injury and death. (Those self-serving bastards!) That's their job. And they are pretty good at it- whether it's helmets or education, motorcycle fatalities per mile traveled has declined since the 1970's. And they understand the law enough to realize that eliminating motorcycles completely would probably come closer to infringing on the kind of rights implicated under the Ninth Amendment.



Rather than "open the door" for more regulation, I feel helmet laws comfort the public at large who, lets face it, have to pay the costs of our enjoyment, whether through hearing our loud pipes, (you know you got 'em!) sport bikes crossing the double yellow lines at them (I know you do it every week!), or paying for increased fire and police protection.(what, you've never gotten an ambulance ride? I've got "frequent flier" miles!) With helmet laws in place, people can look at motorcyclists and say, "well, it's crazy to ride those things, but at least they have helmets on."



If the question comes down to either helmets or motorcycle, I'll pick the motorcycle. I know it's rough to have your life-style choice on display without letting people see your face, but if that's the cost of being left pretty much alone by society, then I'll happily wear my helmet.



Helmet laws are good because they do not abridge any substantial right, save at least money if not lives, and keep society off the backs of motorcyclists. How can any rational person be against it? I don't know, but I'm sure I'll hear all kinds of reasons.





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Old 02-09-2001, 02:19 AM   #36
tbone
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Default Re: Try this potential scenario

Oh my gosh, all you guys could be in Bush's cabinet you're so smart.



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Old 02-09-2001, 02:36 AM   #37
OhBoy
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Default Re: Helmet Law Repeal Stats

I'm sure that somebody may have mentioned this in passing, but here it goes from me: It's not just your "right" to ride lidless. It doesn't affect just you. Don't get me wrong, I am as much in favor of limiting Big Brother's nosing around in my affairs as much as the next guy as long as what I do does not impact somebody else.

What of those TBI's (Traumatic Brain Injuries) attirbuted to riding without a helmet? How long did their insurance hold out? Who's paying for longterm rehab, or worse, institutional care for them? You and me through higher taxes, premiums and co-pays on our own healthcare and insurance.

One of my employee's has a husband (sort of) who thought it would be neat to outrun the local constabulary on a backroad. He missed a curve and plowed a nifty furrow with his noggin. No health insurance, no bike insurance... He has been in intensive inpatient rehab for the last FIVE MONTHS at about $1100/day. That doesn't include his hospital stay. Who's paying for that? I would kind of like to have a say in what I spend money on and if wearing a lid saves several thousand in healthcare and insurance expenses, then WEAR A HELMET!!!

I've been done once on a bike. smacked the side of my head against the ground hard. Rung my bell good, but I am not brain injured. It only cost me a couple of tylenol.
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Old 02-09-2001, 02:36 AM   #38
VFRider
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Default Re: Helmet Law Repeal Stats

Thank you for answering the "Do helmets save lives?" question correctly. Only by comparing fatalities to the number of riders on the road(or better yet miles ridden) can fatality statistics be compared. Remember, NHTSA screamed how airbags would save thousands of lives. After 5 years of airbags, guess what, they were wrong. Way wrong. So when people scream that helmets save lives, make sure they back it up with facts.
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Old 02-09-2001, 02:43 AM   #39
VFRider
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Default Re: GRRRRR....

A simple hypothetical scenario: You wear a helmet and you walk away. End of issue. As for peer preasure, if you are so weak-willed that you will not wear your helmet because you don't want to be "the one full-face geek on the street" then perhaps you should not be riding in the first place.
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Old 02-09-2001, 02:46 AM   #40
tbone
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Default Re: Helmet Law Repeal Stats

There is so much wisdom going down on this subject that if we all really concentrate (like they did back at woodstock to stop the rain then maybe we could pass some of our wisdom on to politicians and, even better, professionals.



We could develop a pill that contains our wisdom. We could help make this such a great (Disney kinda) place to live. And while we're at it we could acquire some of the humanity back we've lost because of the fact that our identity and purpose is an aggregation of our consumption habits.



Anyone interested in talking about why people can just go into a post office and shoot everybody?



Just talk bikes....



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