5 Motorcycle Helmet Myths that Can Endanger Your Life
There is one fact most people can agree on: motorcycles are cool. American pop culture regularly associates motorcycles with adventurous and rebellious characters who have independent spirits. And, nothing subtracts more from that “dangerous renegade” look than stuffing your head into a Department of Transportation (DOT)-compliant motorcycle helmet.
But, if safety is the natural enemy of danger, then riders who value safety should venerate safety helmets. As we’ve noted in previous blogs, motorcycle helmets save lives. A mountain of authority in studies and reports support the fact that motorcycle helmets prevent injuries.
Unfortunately, many riders denounce helmet use. Even worse, some people actively advocate against helmet use by disseminating myths that helmets are actually dangerous. This blog addresses the 5 most common myths about helmet use that would be dangerous if taken seriously.
1. “Your Helmet Is Useless at High Speeds”
This myth is not supported by hard evidence. On the contrary, most research supports the notion that helmet use reduces the risk of sustaining severe injuries in a collision. This myth is misleading because no known safety measure can prevent fatal motorcycle injuries past a certain velocity. But that is not a good reason to stop wearing a helmet.
2. “Helmet Design Increases the Risk of Spine Injury.”
This myth claims that the weight and size of a motorcycle helmet contribute to neck injuries. In reality, DOT-Compliant helmets prevent many other spine injuries in most accidents by acting as a shock absorber.
3. “You Drive Less Carefully with a Helmet”
This myth argues that motorcyclists who wear helmets are lured into a false sense of security and consequently engage in riskier acts. However, this claim is not supported by statistical data, and it is hard to imagine it being the focus of a serious scientific study. A serious study would require retrieving detailed data about a person’s driving habits, reinforced by different levels of “blind” studies.
4. “You Can’t Hear Traffic Noise in a Helmet”
Proponents of this myth observe how helmet designs cover the rider’s ears, claiming that this prevents riders from hearing traffic noise, such as an approaching car. While safe riding does rely on the ability to hear traffic noise, DOT-compliant helmets are designed to filter atmospheric noise so the rider can better distinguish the wind from the sound of approaching vehicles.
5. “Your Peripheral Vision Is Obstructed.”
This myth is contrary to widely-known facts. A DOT-compliant motorcycle helmet must give the rider a 210-degree field of vision. Because a person’s peripheral vision is limited to around 180 degrees, a 210-degree visual field is more than enough room for peripheral vision.
Honest Advice from Experienced California Motorcycle Accident Lawyers
Due to their fast yet exposed design, motorcycles are inherently riskier than other forms of transportation. Motorcycle riders cannot afford to buy into myths that decry the proven safety benefits of wearing a helmet. At Torem & Associates, we have seen first-hand the gruesome severity of motorcycle injuries. Therefore, we recommend motorcycle riders to take advantage of every safety measure available when riding a motorcycle.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, our California motorcycle injury attorneys at Torem & Associates can help. To schedule a free consultation, please call (888) 500-5000 or contact us online.