Motorcyclists in Louisiana must wear a helmet when they’re out riding. This is meant to enhance their safety because this seemingly simple piece of equipment can reduce the risk of fatal injuries. One of the most important things for anyone on a motorcycle to remember is that only DOT-approved helmets provide optimal protection.
In 2020, 37% of motorcyclists who were killed weren’t helmeted, 61% were helmeted and the helmet status of the remaining 3% was unknown. Around half of all passengers who were killed weren’t helmeted. Each fatality that involved a person who wasn’t wearing a helmet might have had a different ending if they had put one on.
How do helmets save lives?
Helmets protect the brain, which is one of the primary reasons they can save lives. It’s still possible to suffer a brain injury even if you’re wearing a helmet, but it likely won’t be as serious as it would have been without it.
One way that you may still suffer a brain injury even if you have a helmet on is because of the jarring of the crash. The brain can slam into the skull, which could lead to a contre-coup brain injury. This means that there’s damage on exact opposite sides of the brain.
Another thing helmets do that most people don’t realize is protect the neck. Helmets have cushioning that relieves some of the pressure on the neck. This can help to prevent muscle strain and nerve damage. It also helps to keep the upper cervical spine stable if there’s a crash.
Any motorcyclist involved in a crash should ensure they get medical care because the possible injuries are severe. The helmet worn at the wreck’s time should be discarded even if there’s no visible damage. The impact of the crash could have weakened vital parts of the helmet.
If the wreck was due to another driver’s negligence, the motorcyclist may opt to pursue a claim for compensation. You need to do this quickly because Louisiana law limits how long you have to get this filed.