Motorcyclists in California often face severe personal injuries and lifelong disabilities after a crash. This means that using personal protective equipment and safety gear like helmets can be critical for health and even survival after a motorcycle crash. One survey found that 1859 lives were saved due to motorcyclists wearing helmets behind the wheel, and that an additional 802 lives could have been saved if all motorcyclists regularly wore their helmets. Using a motorcycle helmet helps to reduce injury to the cervical spine during a crash, which can work to protect motorists’ lives as well as avoid serious disabilities and paralysis.
The study, conducted by the University of Wisconsin, indicated that using a helmet in a motorcycle accident helps to lower the likelihood of fractures to the cervical vertebrae. This contradicts earlier assertions that helmets do not provide protection for the spine during a crash and may, in fact, increase the danger due to added weight on the spine. Concern about spinal injuries has been one reason why helmet use is often not required by law.
Helmet use has already been shown to reduce the risk of traumatic brain injury during a motorcycle crash, but this research examined the medical charts of 1,061 people who were injured in motorcycle crashes between 2010 and 2015. While 323 were wearing helmets, 738 were not; no helmets are required by law. The study found that 7.4 percent of the motorcyclists wearing a helmet had a cervical spine injury, while 15.4 percent of those without a helmet had this type of injury.
Motorcyclists who have been injured in a crash due to another’s dangerous or negligent driving may experience neck injuries, traumatic brain injuries and other serious consequences. A personal injury lawyer may be able to provide Northridge, California, motorcycle accident injury legal representation to help injured motorcyclists seek compensation for their damages incurred as a result of the crash.