While any type of highway travel has the potential to be dangerous, motorcyclists are more susceptible to injury and even death due to their proximity to the road and lack of protection in comparison to the massive weight of an automobile. Being hit by a car can be catastrophic, not to mention the trauma of slamming into the pavement and other obstacles, along with experiencing road rash while skidding on gravel.
Although wearing a helmet can reduce the risk of concussion, traumatic brain injury, and more, they are not required in numerous states, to include Florida. Rules for minors vary, however, and in Florida if you are under 21, you must wear a helmet approved by the Department of Transportation.
Preventing a head injury is important for motorcyclists of any age, but with this law, younger and often more inexperienced riders have a better chance to avoid injuries that could have long-lasting effects like brain damage or worse, fatality. And while those over 21 may eschew the helmet, it is not without some extra expense as required according to Florida Statute 316.211:
“… a person over 21 years of age may operate or ride upon a motorcycle without wearing protective headgear securely fastened upon his or her head if such person is covered by an insurance policy providing for at least $10,000 in medical benefits for injuries incurred as a result of a crash while operating or riding on a motorcycle.
Be sure to wear protective safety gear when you are traveling also, to include:
- Eye protection – required by the State of Florida, eye protection (state-approved goggles are preferred by many motorcyclists) not only keeps dust and other particles from getting into the eyes, but can prevent cuts and serious injuries.
- Protective clothing – while leather may look cool, it is also a common choice for motorcyclists because of its protective nature. Gloves are also a smart choice to save the skin on your hands in the case of an accident.
- Sturdy boots – good footwear is crucial, allowing you to get a sturdy grip as well as protecting your feet from weather, debris and injury. Although you may not always feel like going to the effort of wearing heavy boots, think of it as a must for operating your motorcycle.
Although it may be tempting to enjoy the freedom of riding your motorcycle without the restriction of a helmet, protecting your brain is of the utmost importance—without a helmet, you could experience a catastrophic injury that changes your life forever.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident due to the negligence of another driver, contact the attorneys at Heintz & Becker. We’ve helped victims from Bradenton, Sarasota, and all over Florida get compensation for their damages and medical expenses after accidents. Call us for a free consultation now at 941-748-2916 or contact us online. We are here to help!
All blogs are written on behalf of Heintz & Becker for informational purposes. These articles should not, however, be considered legal advice, or in any way responsible for creating an attorney/client relationship.