It is widely accepted that motorcycle helmets don’t just reduce your risk of dying in an accident, but also reduce the risk of serious or life threatening brain injuries.New research, however, now indicates that helmets may also have other benefits.They dramatically reduce the risk of suffering serious injuries to the face.
What’s more, it’s believed that motorcycle helmets do not need a face shield in order to reduce the risk of facial injuries.Even motorcycle helmets without shields, the researchers believe, can afford greater protection to the face.
The researchers studied data that came from the National Trauma Data Bank.The data involved approximately 46,000 motorcyclists who were involved in accidents, and suffered injuries that were serious enough for them to be taken to the hospital.Approximately 75% of all the motorcyclists in the study were wearing helmets at the time of the accident.The researchers found that motorcyclists who were wearing helmets had a 60% reduced chance of suffering facial injuries to the nose, jaws and other parts of the face, compared to motorcyclists who were not wearing a helmet.
The most frequent facial injuries were injuries to the eyes, with approximately 2,300 motorcyclists suffering eye injuries, followed by nose injuries at 1,715.Approximately 1,400 motorcyclists sustained severe bruising to the face, while 800 motorcyclists broke their jawbones.These are the same types of injuries that we routinely see as Atlanta motorcycle accident lawyers.
The researchers did not confirm if the helmets in all of these accidents contained a face shield.However, they believe that even motorcycle helmets that do not have face shields have a major role to play in reducing the risk of facial injuries.In an accident involving a helmeted motorcyclist, the helmet absorbs trauma to the head, even when the helmet does not have a face shield.Additionally, helmets prevent fractures from spreading to the facial bones.
The result of the study should be very encouraging to motorcycle helmet advocates everywhere.Many motorcycling groups are divided on the necessity of wearing a helmet during an accident.They believe that it infringes on a motorcyclist’s rights, to be coerced into wearing a helmet at all times.However, there is enough evidence to indicate that wearing a helmet substantially increases your risks of walking away from an accident with minimal injuries.The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has conducted an extensive study which shows that non-helmeted motorcyclists are not only more likely to suffer a serious or fatal brain injury in an accident, but are at risk for more extensive hospitalization and higher medical costs compared to helmeted motorcyclists.
Wearing a helmet is one of the most basic and important steps that a biker can take to reduce the risk of injuries in an accident.Our bike accident attorneys encourage all riders to wear proper safety gear, and to call our office if they are injured in a motorcycle accident.