Wearing a bicycle helmet substantially reduces your risk of injury in an accident unless the helmet is designed deficiently and fails to protect your head upon impact. A study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety rated bicycle helmets and found that all helmets do not offer the same level of injury protection. Some helmets seem to do a much better job of protecting the head, compared to others.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety collaborated with the Virginia Tech Helmet Lab to create a bicycle helmet rating system that the two organizations claim is the first such rating system for helmets. The rating system assigned stars to each helmet based on its effectiveness against injuries.
Disturbingly enough, the rating system assigned five stars for only four helmets out of the 30 that were rated. A total of 24 helmets were rated 3 to 4 stars. Two helmets were ranked at the bottom of the list with just two stars.
There is no denying that there is a need for a helmet rating system like this. As more numbers of bicyclists join others on the road, the risk of injuries that can leave bicyclists with severe lifelong trauma, or permanent disability is always present. A helmet is often the only piece of equipment that stands between a bicyclist and a traumatic brain injury in an accident. When bicyclists wear helmets that are not properly designed for their skull or with maximum protection in mind, the effects can be disastrous.
In 2016, more than 800 bicyclists were killed in accidents across the country. More than 50% of these bicyclists were not wearing helmets at the time. Many of these fatalities could have been prevented if the bicyclists had been wearing a helmet at the time of the accident. Helmets reduce the risk of injuries by as much as 50%.
A strong, reliable helmet can mean the difference between safety and a serious head injury in an accident. A helmet rating system like this will help bicyclists make sound decisions that will prove invaluable for them.
The Indianapolis bicycle accident lawyers at Montross Miller Muller Mendelson Kennedy, LLP represent persons who have suffered injuries in bicycle accidents in the Indianapolis region and across Indiana.