In 1995, a study performed by researchers at the National Public Services Research Institute assessed motorcycle helmet interference, specifically the effects that motorcycle helmets had on seeing and hearing. It involved 50 motorcyclists who operated the motorcycles on a test route. They had to change lanes in response to an audible signal wearing no helmet, a partial coverage helmet, or a full coverage helmet. The researchers assessed half of the riders for head rotation and the other half for hearing.
The results showed that a helmet did create a minor vision impairment based on the helmet size/coverage. Participants had to turn their heads a little further when wearing a helmet, but not to the full extent of the helmet’s restriction. They note, “the minimal amount of lateral vision…that is sacrificed by wearing a helmet can be made up by turning the head a little further.” In regard to hearing, the study found no differences in hearing abilities.
They concluded that any impairment on seeing or hearing is very minor. Thus, they say that any impairment is too small to compromise the safety that comes from wearing a helmet.
Should I wear a helmet?
Again, the study found that any effects on vision are minimal and there are no effects on hearing among riders who wear motorcycle helmets. But there are serious risks of not wearing a helmet.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 42 percent of fatally injured motorcyclists in 2012 in the U.S. were not wearing a helmet. It estimates that helmets could have saved 781 lives had every rider worn one in 2012. It credits motorcycle helmets with saving about 1,700 motorcyclists’ lives that year.
Texas motorcycle helmet laws require all riders under 21 to wear a motorcycle helmet. But even if not required to wear one, doing so can be in your best interest. It can save your life and may even be a factor if you suffer head or neck injuries in an accident and wish to file a personal injury claim.
Contact a Motorcycle Accident Attorney
If you are a motorcyclist in Dallas who has suffered injuries in an accident that someone else caused, the attorneys at the Law Offices of Julie Johnson, PLLC, can help. By calling us now, you can set up your free case consultation today. You can reach us at 214-290-8001 or you can fill out the form on our contact page.