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Old 06-18-2003, 07:00 AM   #21
DataDan
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Default It's the same old song...

Fortunately, the wholesale carnage that some expect after a helmet law is repealed doesn't occur. Though for the worse, the change is much less serious than predicted.



The most recent example is Florida, which repealed its helmet law effective July 1, 2000. News media and some motorcycle forums on the net anticipated a bloodbath. Didn't happen. Here are the actual Florida motorcycle deaths:


<tt>
Jan-Jun Jul-Dec Total
------- ------- -----
1999 87 91 178
2000 124 135* 259
2001 143* 144* 287 *post-repeal</tt>



To be sure, deaths increased significantly from 1999 to 2000. But much of the increase occurred in January through June, before the law was repealed. Likewise, much of the increase from 2000 to 2001 occurred in July through December, following repeal. Certainly some of the increase was due to decreased helmet use, but Florida was also experiencing a motorcycling boom (as did the rest of the US in 2000), and the casualty count reflects that as well. Interestingly, fatalities in March 2001, which included the first post-repeal Bike Week, actually dropped to 23 from 29 the previous year.



An extensive study of repeal effects can be found in the NHTSA publication, Evaluation of Motorcycle Helmet Law Repeal in Texas and Arkansas. Fatality rate (per registered motorcycle) dropped in Arkansas after repeal and increased somewhat in Texas (but note wild registration count fluctuations). However, the Texas analysis also shows that "the proportion of treated motorcyclists with traumatic brain injuries increased and treatment costs for traumatic brain injury cases increased substantially following the law change."



While it should be crystal clear to anyone who rides—and especially to anyone who's ever crashed—that it's better to crash with a helmet on than without one, I think we tend to overestimate their effectiveness when extrapolating to the riding population. A relatively small increase in safety can be vital to an individual, but still not amount to much when multiplied by the size of the population. And, there are plenty of ways to get hurt or killed on a motorcycle even with a helmet.



[data from the FARS query facility and other resources at the NHTSA website]
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Old 06-18-2003, 07:00 AM   #22
GS1100GK
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Default Re: PA Helmet Law Changing

Althought I am a firm believer in freedom of choice for adults (21 or older) I find it crazy for anyone to ride without a helmet. I understand the thrill of riding with just the breeze in your hair, but the reality is your skull is not made of iron and will break if it makes contact with road, trees, telephone poles, house, or other motorized vehicle. I also do not necessarily buy the idea that society will or should bear the burden of your medical and rehabilitation cost should you mangle your body and/or brain because you decided to ride without a helmet. However, maybe a good compromise is that anyone who wants to ride without a helmet should have a living will established and on file with the state so family members can pull the life support plug on your brain dead body once you screw it up!



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Old 06-18-2003, 07:05 AM   #23
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Default Re: PA Helmet Law Changing

You are assuming, of course, that we think income taxes are a good idea; that we think the government should be paying our medical bills and thus have the right to run our lives; that we agree with seat belt laws, etc. I live in a suburb--you're saying I can ride a dirtbike on my lawn? Nope. But wait--I pay property taxes, so it's the government's land anyhow! On your slippery slope, then, the government has a right to dictate EVERYTHING that goes on in my house, don't they? All the pro-helmet law people begin with the flawed premise that the government is supposed to pick up the check for everything in life, including medical bills. Go to Barnes & Noble, you can get a copy of the U.S. Constitution for $3.95. Medical bills are not addressed in this document. But then, if people like you didn't try to grow our goverment into super-nanny, you wouldn't have any excuse to tell us how to live, now, would you, comrade?
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Old 06-18-2003, 07:07 AM   #24
DataDan
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Default Re: It's the same old song...

Sorry about the table. The preview button allowed me to use the "pre" HTML tag for preformatted text, but it was ignored in the final post. Hope this is readable:



year Jan-Jun Jul-Dec Total

1999 87 91 178

2000 124 135* 259

2001 143* 144* 287 *post-repeal
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Old 06-18-2003, 07:12 AM   #25
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Default Re: Helmet Laws Bite!

Smart ass its a typo and since this site isn't called ladders online people of Forest Gump levels of intelligence or higher could probably figure it out. Yes look at Christopher Reeves, fell of a horse at much slower speeds than a motorcycle can travel, wearing a helmet, and landing on soft earth (as compared to asphalt or concrete!) I guess we should stop trying to make your life safe, so we won't try to get stricter laws for car drivers that "accidently" run down motorcyclists because they "didn't see you" because I mean you don't need anyone looking out for your safety.
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Old 06-18-2003, 07:17 AM   #26
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Default Re: Helmet Laws Bite!

I wasn't making fun of a typo (if I were, I would have pointed out 'dimensa'). What I'm pointing out is that there are more risky activities out there. Why couldn't he fall off a roof, or fence, or horse? What laws can we pass to make these activities safer? "I guess we should stop trying to make your life safe" YES! YOU GET IT NOW! CUT IT OUT! STOP! HALT! DESIST! If I want to be safe, I have a 4,300-pound car with airbags.
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Old 06-18-2003, 07:31 AM   #27
electraglider_1997
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Default Tumbler

I hear the violins playing. Tell me, did gramps even have a motorcycle licence? Tumbler you sound like you need to lock yourself away to protect yourself from life's gamble. It's people like you that I get tired of hearing. Always with the examples of someone getting hurt on a motorcycle. You'd better not ride then. How can you live with yourself knowing what you know? Ever notice that everytime someone is killed at an unmarked intersection that everyone scrambles to erect traffic lights even though for years there had been no problem. You'd think that people had been dropping like flys but no, only emotion involved. The way I look at things is this; this country would still be just English colonies and not the U.S. of A if all the colonist would have been worried about getting hurt and didn't take up arms. They wanted freedom of choice then and a lot of us want it now. Live your narrow view of freedom but let the rest of us to our larger view.
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Old 06-18-2003, 07:32 AM   #28
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Default Re: PA Helmet Law Changing

If you don't think income taxes are a good idea then we do you live here? Seriously why? Secondly, elected officials make laws so if you're in the minority T.S. Let see what else, oh yea you and the "freedom to buy a house in the suburbs, the govenment didn't force you to buy that house, but it is letting you use the land that it's on. I'll meet you at Barnes and Nobles and together we'll find in the Constitution were it says citizens of this country we have the "right" to ride motorcycles. You are damn right about the Constitiution not saying anything about medical bills. I agree with you 100%. So does the government providing even a minimum of health care make this a better or worse nation. And before you start in on welfare moms and junkies, etc we're talking about helmets, this is a motorcycle site. You can cram the comrade *****, I love my country for the rights and PRIVLEDGES that I enjoy, but anarchist out there here the expression "free country" and think they should be able to do whatever they want. Oh and if you have a problem with taxes why are you opposed to a law that could lower them. You don't really think the state Pennsylvania is really going to hire more cops to enforce helmet laws do you?

This law is similar to the helmet laws in TX. Basically, it just means you need to have a t least some minimum experience riding before you can ride a bike w/o a helmet. Before I started riding a would have agreed with you about helmet laws being unjust, but after a few years of riding experience I think that Joe Public riding a street bike it is in the real world, Not the theoretical we debate on this site, it is a good idea.
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Old 06-18-2003, 07:34 AM   #29
electraglider_1997
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Default Probably Bushes relatives

You can't count Texas head injuries since all of Bush's cronies are brain dead already.
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Old 06-18-2003, 07:35 AM   #30
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Default Helmets for everybody, in cars...body armour in bright colors for two wheelers!

What are the majority of injuries sustained by Automobile drivers with or without Airbags/seat belts? Head injuries.



What are most of the injuries sutained by motorcycle riders? Oddly enough, abdominal.



So I say head helmets for car drivers (all of them) and bright ass orange and kawi green full body armor for motorcyclists and bicycle riders!



To hell with rider and drivers education, most states have or are in the process of saving money by gutting these programs anyway!



Legislate, don't educate! Best way to educate is to incarcerate! (Quote from Former Ga Gov Roy Barnes)



Let everybody eat, drink and talk on cell phones while riding (yeah, I've see that) or driving a big ass SUV with the TV and GPS on!! What the hell, we are all responsible for our own actions, right! This is still America, ain't it?



Yes I am kidding, just tired of the BS about this crap....I wear a helmet even though a friend was killed by one (Broke his neck when he turned around too quickly when his drunk wife fell off the back of the bike. She was uninjured except for scrapes and bruises.)



Don't even get me started about the Georgia State Flag...



BigJames

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