Wearing a helmet while riding a motorcycle might seem like common sense. After all, a person’s head is completely exposed while riding and it is very easy to suffer a serious brain injury in a motorcycle accident. Unlike motorists riding in cars or trucks, motorcyclists have no steel cage acting as a buffer in the event of a collision.
Before the 1980s, Connecticut once had universal helmet laws. As the name suggests, anyone riding a motorcycle had to wear a helmet. But the state repealed this law in 1989, and now only certain bikers must wear one. Our Glastonbury motorcycle accident attorney takes a closer look at the laws below.
Current Connecticut Laws
You’ll still need to wear a helmet if:
- You are applying for a motorcycle endorsement on your license. You will need to wear a helmet so long as you have a training permit.
- You are under age 18. Even if you have an endorsement on your license, you still must wear a helmet until you become an adult.
Any violation will result in a fine. However, it’s also possible to serve jail time if you refuse to wear a helmet multiple times while on a training permit.
Every few years, state legislators try to bring back the universal helmet law. And every few years, this proposal draws protests. Thus far, the legislature has not passed any new bill, so riders still get to choose what to put on their heads.
Do Helmets Reduce Head Injury?
Yes. Most arguments about whether helmets should be mandatory revolve around individual liberty. But helmet safety is not really in dispute.
For example, the Centers for Disease Control found that wearing a helmet reduced the risk of serious brain injury by 69%. They also reduced fatalities by roughly 37%, which ended up saving 1,859 lives in 2016.
By reducing the risk of injury, helmets also reduced the cost of motorcycle accidents. According to CDC estimates, helmets saved the country over a billion dollars in medical care and lost productivity at work. Even better, motorcyclists had reduced pain and suffering and could return to their regular lives much faster.
Do Helmets Reduce Visibility & Biker Awareness?
Not really. The studies are also pretty clear on this point. For example, it’s true that most helmets will slightly reduce a bikers’ peripheral vision. But a motorcyclist can easily compensate by turning their head a little bit more. Further, helmets do not appreciably reduce the ability to hear traffic signals, like a car horn. Instead, helmets block out mostly the sound of the wind.
If you are just getting started riding a motorcycle, we strongly encourage you to wear a helmet. Doing so does not compromise your safety but will reduce the risk of a devastating injury.
Injured in a Motorcycle Accident? Contact Our Glastonbury Motorcycle Accident Lawyers
Tehrani Law Group can help anyone hurt in a motorcycle collision obtain compensation for their injuries. Bikers often face an uphill climb in receiving the compensation they are entitled to, but hiring the right lawyer can make all the difference. Call or send our motorcycle accident lawyers in Glastonbury an email to schedule a free consultation.