Wearing a Helmet


Wearing a HelmetWhether you're on a bike, motorcycle, or an all-terrain-vehicle (ATV), you should always wear a helmet. Of course, not everyone does, and not every state requires it in all situations. Although many states have helmet laws, they can vary quite a bit. So why should you wear a helmet, even if it's not the law? There are several reasons, including the most important: It could save your life.

Motorcycle Helmet Laws:

Although most states (47) have some type of helmet law, not all states have what's called a "universal helmet law," which means that helmets are required for all operators and passengers. In a majority of states, helmets are only required for riders ages 17 and under. But motorcyclists who don't wear helmets are much more likely to sustain serious head trauma or die in the event of an accident. In addition, motorcycle deaths are up, and so is the median age of motorcycle drivers. According to the Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, "there were 10 times as many unhelmeted motorcyclist fatalities in states without universal helmet laws (1,777 unhelmeted fatalities) as in states with universal helmet laws (170 unhelmeted fatalities) in 2017."

Bicycle, Scooters and Skateboards:

State laws requiring bicycle helmets usually only apply to minors (age limits vary), and many states don't have a bicycle helmet law at all. But even in states without a helmet law, there are cities where helmets are required, sometimes even for adults. A handful of states also have age-specific helmet laws for scooters, skateboards, and even skates. Even though a bike or scooter might seem "safer" than a motorcycle, accidents can still be deadly; wearing a helmet greatly reduces the risk of serious injury or death.

ATVs and UTVs:

Again, most helmet laws concerning ATV/UTV use mostly apply to riders under the age of 18. Because the popularity of off road vehicles has taken off recently, many states do not have laws in place at all. Hundreds of people die in ATV-related accidents each year, and the number is only increasing. ATV riders without helmets are much more likely to sustain a traumatic brain injury (TBI) or die as the result of their injuries.

Helmets and Liability:

If you survive a crash and are not wearing a helmet, you might have a whole other type of headache on the way. If you're in a city or state where helmets are required, it might be considered negligence to be riding without one, meaning insurance (yours or that of the other driver) might not pay for any medical bills or provide coverage for your damaged vehicle.

The right thing to do:

If you have children or are part of a community, wearing a helmet not only protects you from being harmed or taken from your loved ones: it sets a positive example for your friends and family, especially younger riders. Always wear the right type of helmet and make sure it fits properly before getting out on the road. Getting used to a helmet may take time, but it doesn't have to diminish your enjoyment. If you don't wear a helmet and get seriously hurt, you won't get to enjoy being out there at all.

For all of your insurance questions, call or contact Executive Insurance & Financial Services today.

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