A motorcycle accident is more likely to result in fatal injuries than any other type of motor vehicle accident. This is mainly because a motorcycle rider does not have the protection being in an enclosed vehicle, but also because many motorcycle accidents can result in serious head injuries. This is why a wearing a motorcycle helmet while riding a motorcycle is critical in preventing injury.
Georgia is one among several states that have universal motorcycle helmet laws requiring all riders and passengers on motorcycles to wear helmets while riding. Data from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety shows that universal helmet laws go a long way in increasing helmet usage among passengers and riders, thereby preventing the kind of serious crash-related injuries that can result in death. If you are riding a motorcycle in Atlanta, you must wear a helmet regardless of your age, riding experience or whether you are a rider or a passenger on a motorcycle.
Universal motorcycle helmet laws make sense, and it can be hard to understand why only a few states have these laws in place. It wasn’t always like this. Several decades ago, the administration had tied universal motorcycle helmet laws to state accessibility to construction funds. As a result, all states excluding 3, had universal helmet laws. However, when these incentives were removed, many states went ahead with the decision to repeal universal helmet laws within their borders. This has proved to be a disaster for some of these states that have recorded high percentages of traffic accident fatalities involving motorcycle crashes since the laws were repealed.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety data shows that when states like Georgia have universal motorcycle helmet laws in place, approximately 94% of motorcycle riders and passengers wear helmets while riding. In states that do not have these laws, the rate of helmet use is just about 60%. Not only are motorcycle riders and passengers more likely to wear helmets when the state they are riding in has universal helmet laws, but they are also likely to wear better-quality helmets that meet federal safety standards. In states that had these laws, as many as 84% of riders and passengers wore helmets that met federal standards. That rate dropped significantly to just 54% when states did not have such laws.
Clearly the laws do not just encourage motorcyclists and passengers to wear helmets on threat of penalty, but they also encourage motorcyclists to purchase and use high-quality certified helmets that meet federal safety standards. It is very important to wear certified helmets that meet these standards because they have been subjected to tests that gauge their ability to withstand damage from the kind of severe force and pressure generated during an accident.
The Atlanta motorcycle accident attorneys at the Katz Personal Injury Lawyers represent persons injured in motorcycle crashes in the metro Atlanta region and across Georgia. If you or a loved one has suffered injuries in a motorcycle accident, talk to an attorney and determine your legal options to a claim for damages. You might be eligible for a claim that includes compensation for your medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering and other types of damages. Discuss your case with an attorney at our firm. Initial consultations are free.