Saturday, November 30, 2013

How to Choose a Motorcycle Helmet, Part 2

Now it's time to add the final clarifications to help you enjoy the best experience with your helmet, and we'll delve deeper into the comfort and passive safety areas.

Senses are vital

When riding a motorcycle, being aware of what's actually happening around the bike is vital. Being able to analyze the multitude of factors which may develop into an emergency situation is a very good asset, and for this, a rider's senses must not be diminished. We're speaking here about sight and hearing.

On the noise side, there's a very strong debate between people who complain about noisy helmets and those who'd rather be able to hear absolutely everything around them. Fact is that prolonged exposure to noise is not healthy. Hearing damage can occur in case the rider is exposed to high noise levels for a long time (that is months or more, not hours).

Even more, some people might become fatigued after being exposed to abnormal noise levels, and a fatigued rider is usually a distracted rider, probably the last thing you'd like to happen to you. Some guys ride with ear plugs, while others would rather spend some more money on a quieter helmet. There is no right and wrong here, but most people would agree that the quieter the lid, the better the ride.

Helmets are tested for noise levels in wind tunnels⌕ Helmets are tested for noise levels in wind tunnels. Fancy helmets look cool, but visibility is reduced⌕ Fancy helmets look cool, but visibility is reduced Some riders cannot do without earplugs⌕ Some riders cannot do without earplugs Now, a rough comparison between the various types of helmets would see the shorty and ¾ helmets as the noisiest, followed by the flip-up (modular) ones, and the full-face, sport ones with the best aerodynamics and therefore, minimal wind noise.

However, in many conditions, especially when riding in the busy city traffic, it's better to be able to hear an incoming car and similar noises. I remember the story of a buddy who was riding in Argentina, and who had to stop in a very long line due to an accident ahead.

As he figured he wasn't going anywhere for at least half an hour or so, he stopped the engine and took off his helmet, only to hear tires screeching far behind him. Looking behind, he saw a large truck skidding towards the line of stopped cars.

Without hesitation, he threw his helmet into the grass on the side of the road and managed to push his bike down the few-feet-high embankment, thus saving his life. Moments after he went off the road, the truck slammed hard into the stopped cars, damaging several of them and causing multiple injuries. Needless to say that the guy would have been killed had he not heard the braking noise behind.

So, when it comes to wind noise, you can also do some web research on some of the helmets you'd like to buy, and at the same time consider your bike. If you ride a cruiser with a huge windscreen, then noise will most likely not be such an issue. However, if you ride a Ninja, there's nothing between the wind and your head, so it's up to you to make a smart choice.


Being able to see as much as possible when wearing a helmet is also critical. A helmet with a wide visual field is always preferable to a narrower one. Peripheral vision plays a very important role in the rider's positioning on the road, especially when surrounded by multiple vehicles.

It also provides the brain with a lot of info many riders are not consciously aware of, but which are a vital component of the instinctual balance and road stance.

A helmet which impairs vision is to be avoided, and this goes for the vertical axis, too. Small visor slots force the riders to raise their heads to see the changing traffic lights in case they stop closer to them, while forcing them to bend their heads to check the instruments when riding.

This may not seem too much of a problem at first glance, but it can negatively impact the rider's awareness in a subtle way.

Anti-fog treatment for the visor is also crucial when choosing a helmet, especially for those who plan to ride in colder weather. Even during a summer downpour, as the temperature drops, the humidity in the rider's breath can condensate on the visor, obstructing the sight, with potentially dangerous consequences.

Most helmet visors are now anti-fog treated, if you're looking form the middle-price segment up. While some of them work pretty well under normal conditions, others offer poor defense against fogging.

A sure method to eliminate fogging is choosing a helmet with a Pinlock-ready visor. Pinlock is an additional lens which attaches to the interior of the visor and will not fog even during winter. I have ridden in temperatures way below 0° centigrade (32° F) and breathing out only caused fogging on the sunglasses. Fogging is one of the major causes for poor vision⌕ Fogging is one of the major causes for poor visionA Pinlock lens eliminates fogging and offers crystal-clear sight⌕ A Pinlock lens eliminates fogging and offers crystal-clear sightAfter riding in the dirt, cleaning the helmet is mandatory⌕ After riding in the dirt, cleaning the helmet is mandatory While not all helmets are Pinlock-ready, I have seen riders who bought the lenses, which are supplied with the holding pins, and have drilled the visors of their helmets to retrofit the anti-fog lens. Making precise measurements prior to start drilling is mandatory.

To sum things up, a helmet which allows good hearing and the best vision is always to be preferred.

Ventilation and washability

Even if you plan to be a Sunday rider, the helmet liner will become dirty and will need cleaning. Since you're going to spend some hard-earned money, you'd better be able to enjoy your helmet, and a liner which reeks of sweat mixed with dirt and dead skin is not exactly enjoyable.

That's why more and more manufacturers make helmets with removable and washable liners, which are easy to take off, clean, and then put back in their place. Just place them in a washing bag and set your washing machine on the delicate cycle, then have them air dry up before you re-attach them.

Helmets with non-removable liners are a bit more difficult to clean and I'll post a guide on this in the future.

Well, to prevent excessive sweating, helmets have ventilation ports. However, it doesn't necessarily mean that holes in the helmet make it a cool one; some helmets have really poor ventilation and you'll be sweating (and swearing) a lot if you get one of these.

You can always ask the helmet dealer to take the helmet you feel like buying for a short ride. Make sure you have a balaclava and put it on before you try the helmet. Then take your bike for a spin and try to see if it “breathes” the way you want.

Cheaper helmets often have ports which cannot be closed, and this will be painful in really cold weather. At the same time, make sure you can easily operate the vent covers with gloved hands: it makes much more sense to be able to open or close them while riding than having to pull over, take one glove off and then set forth anew.

Weight and overall comfort

Finally, you should be feeling alright with the helmet on your head and strapped well in place. Even though motorcycle riding was never a benchmark for comfort, this does not mean you have to turn it into a nightmare.

The weight of a helmet can affect a rider in more ways than one can figure out at a glance. First of all it's the neck strain: a helmet which is too heavy for a certain rider will require much effort from back and neck muscles, reducing comfort and possibly causing more severe injuries. It's no use to wear a heavy weight on the head: you should choose a helmet you feel ok with, from a mass point of view.

Most helmet manufacturer offer multiple shell sizes for their mid-range (and above) lids. This is because it would be indeed utterly silly to offer a helmet made with a standard, let's say XL shell, loaded with lots of EPS to fit an S head.

Do not be afraid to ask the helmet retailers whether they have different shell sizes for your lid in case you feel in need for something different. At the same time, many higher-end helmets come with different sizes for the cheek pads, to provide a snug fit. Make sure you check them out, too. Washable liners are soimply great for eeping a nice smell inside the lid⌕ Washable liners are soimply great for eeping a nice smell inside the lidGood ventilation reduces sweating and wicks out moisture⌕ Good ventilation reduces sweating and wicks out moistureA helmet can be damaged even with no exterior signs⌕ A helmet can be damaged even with no exterior signs In case the helmet you're testing feels a bit too snug, it's up to you to judge whether you need another bigger model: liners usually break in after some time, and choosing a snug one might turn out to be the best-fitting option after one year or so.

If you wear glasses, please make sure your helmet liner has the special design to accommodate them, namely some grooves where the braces go. Put on the helmet, then your glasses: if it feels uncomfortable now, it will not grow better with time. In fact, your head will hurt in 10 minutes or so.

Finally, one more way to decide on the helmet size is the “finger check”: if your index finger can easily go between your head and the liner, the helmet may be too large. Always remember that motorcycle helmets are supposed to offer a snug fit on the riders' heads, and the space in between is a hazard in case of a crash.

If you care about your head, it's usually best to avoid buying a used helmet. A damaged helmet may not show exterior signs: the performance in case of an impact may be reduced to almost zero in some cases, nullifying its very purpose.

Now, you're ready to check with your nearest dealer and choose your new lid. Ride well, and ride safe!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Airbrushed T-shirts

Did you know that our airbrushes are a bunch of crybabies?  Those hippies are always wanting more money....More business.  Well, the boss has created more work for them by adding this airbrushed t-shirt section to our website.  Check out there work and let us know if you have any ideas!
airbrushed t shirts

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

I hate Auburn shirt

Attention foreigners.....And by foreigners I mean people who don't live in Alabama.  This week is Iron Bowl Week which is the greatest Football week of the year.  We require all Iron Horse Helmets customers to start hating Auburn now and pray to your shrine of Nick Saban and Bear Bryant.

Time for me to go buy my I Hate Auburn Shirt!
I have Auburn shirt

Monday, November 25, 2013

Cookie Monster Helmet cover spotted in Houston

Do you know how to tell that it's cold?  You can tell because people in Houston Texas are wearing motorcycle helmets.  Texans don't wear helmets for safety, they wear helmets for warmth.  

Our cookie monster helmet cover was spotted at the Yankee Tavern during the Supernoob Sunday ride!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

These Russians don't stand a chance!

Andrew Artishchev has the overtly persistent personality you’d expect of a young entrepreneur from Russia. The CEO of LiveMap and his usability expert, Dmitry Sizonov, are in the midst of a West Coast tour showing off the first prototype of the start-up’s augmented reality motorcycle helmet. It’s an awesome idea, but so far, it’s been rough going.

“You can’t raise venture money in Russia,” Artishchev tells WIRED as Sizonov sets up an intricate array of electronics, wires, and mounts. “Russia is like the U.S. They only want to invest in software, not hardware.”

That’s a common cry from ambitious entrepreneurs around the world, and it’s one reason crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter have come to prominence. Too bad Kickstarter didn’t want anything to do with LiveMap.

“We were on Kickstarter for two weeks and were pulled off,” Artishchev says. “I contacted every person [at Kickstarter] and got no response.” The reason for the radio silence, Artishchev would later discover, is that safety products bring a host of liability concerns, and Kickstarter wouldn’t shoulder the risk. A few days later, LiveMap debuted on competing crowdfunding site Indiegogo, and the helmet started getting attention. Lots of it.

The helmet combines elements of Google Glass with the kind of head-up display you’d find on a fighter-jet. “It’s better than an F35 helmet at $100,000,” Artishchev claims. “But ours only costs $2,000.”

That’s a big statement from a small company, and based on the prototype assembled on the conference room table, they’ve got a long way to go.

In its current form, the company only has a 3-D-printed helmet that’s been polished and painted. It’s just a mock-up — a Daft Punk prop — without electronics, padding, or even a transparent visor. The real technology is a tangle of taped together cords, a custom printed circuit board, and a laser pico projector displaying full color, high-resolution images on a piece of plexiglass dangling from a mount.

It’s powered by two 3,000 milliamp batteries — Google Glass barely gets by with a 570 mAh pack — and links up with 4G LTE. Despite that energy intensive data connection, GPS, and what Artishchev promises will be a “4K resolution” video camera, they claim the LiveMap helmet will run for 10 hours.

Voice controls will be handled by Nuance’s voice-to-text technology — the same company handling Apple’s Siri system — with data pulled from Yelp to provide restaurant and service recommendations, while maps are sourced from Navteq.

Naturally, this cobbled together prototype is rough, but the underlying technology works. Maps are clear, with simulated turn-by-turn directions showing well even in a brightly lit office. The voice searches pull up the best place for seafood when asked, “Where can I get a fish dinner?” And Artishchev says offline maps will be available when riders don’t have a data connection.

But despite lots of press and even interest from some police departments in their home country, LiveMap only has five backers that have pledged $1,500 to get one of the first helmets. And deliveries aren't expected for another year, assuming LiveMap meets the stringent safety requirements in the U.S., Europe, and Japan.

That’s one reason why a partnership with a major helmet manufacturer would almost be a necessity, particularly if LiveMap wants to market its helmet with a $2,000 sticker. “It’s like a high-end camera,” Artishchev says before confirming, “we are working with a famous helmet company.” They’ll need the help and the resources. It’s a great concept desperately in need of a polished execution that only a company like Arai or Bell could pull off.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Congressman Questions CDC Helmet Stance

Courtesy of American Motorcyclist Association
Thursday, November 21, 2013

The American Motorcyclist Association revealed that United States Representative Tim Walberg (R-Michigan) has challenged the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for an explanation on why it is supporting efforts to create a federally mandated mandatory motorcycle helmet law. Walberg was prompted to action by a presentation given by the Helmet Law Review Team of the Community Preventative Services Task Force in late October 2013 which concluded that mandatory helmet laws would “produce substantial economic benefits.”

Walberg is troubled by the fact that potential negative impacts on nation-wide motorcycling are not addressed and questions whether the CDC should be tasked with researching and making recommendations regarding transportation safety. The Michigan Representative has also been prompted to ask CDC Director Thomas Frieden, “is it the goal or strategy of the CDC to reduce the use of motorcycles - a legal mode of transportation - by recommending and pursing a federal helmet law?”

The full AMA press release regarding U.S. Rep. Walberg’s challenge to the CDC is included below. – MotoUSA

U.S. Rep. Tim Walberg (R-Mich.) is asking the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention whether it is trying to reduce motorcycle ridership by pursuing a federal mandatory motorcycle helmet law, the American Motorcyclist Association reports.

The congressman is also questioning the economic impacts the CDC cited to support mandatory motorcycle helmet laws.

In a letter to CDC Director Thomas Frieden dated Nov. 21, Walberg, who is a lifelong motorcyclist, an AMA life member and a member of the Congressional Motorcycle Caucus, asked " it the goal or strategy of the CDC to reduce the use of motorcycles -- a legal mode of transportation -- by recommending and pursuing a federal helmet law?

"If so, how would this strategy be implemented and by what authority would it be instituted?" Walberg asked. He also questioned whether Frieden believes the CDC is the federal agency best suited to research and make recommendations related to transportation safety.

The CDC, which is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is headquartered in Atlanta.

Walberg sent the letter after analyzing a presentation titled "Economic Impact of Motorcycle Helmet Law: A Systematic Review." The presentation was made by the Helmet Law Review Team of the Community Preventive Services Task Force on Oct. 23. The 15-member task force, each of whom is appointed by the CDC director, makes recommendations to the CDC and reports to the U.S. Congress about community preventive services, programs and policies to improve health.

The task force is preparing to recommend that all states have universal Motorcycle helmet laws, which means that all riders, regardless of age, would be required to wear helmets.

In his letter, Walberg strongly opposed its findings and conclusions. One part of the presentation, in particular, "infers a positive awareness of helmet laws with the potential for reduced motorcycle use," Walberg said. "The presentation goes on to conclude that 'economic evidence shows that universal motorcycle helmet laws produce substantial economic benefits, and these benefits greatly exceed expected costs,' however, there is no reference whatsoever to the significant economic costs anticipated by reducing motorcycle use.

"In fact, the only costs identified by the Task Force on slide 37 are the costs of purchasing a motorcycle helmet and the enactment and enforcement costs of helmet laws, which are concluded to be negligible," Walberg said. "Not only does this contradict the earlier findings about how imposing motorcycle laws would discourage motorcycle use, but it ignores the positive economic impact motorcyclists provide.

"Motorcyclists not only enjoy riding on American roads, they also spend billions of dollars touring and attending rallies," he said. "Reducing motorcycle use would have a detrimental effect on the motorcycle industry, dealer sales, tourism, associated employment and related tax revenues. As an avid and experienced motorcycle rider, I believe government should be in the business of promoting the recreational, economic and environmental benefits of responsible motorcycle riding - not discouraging it."

Wayne Allard, AMA vice president for government relations and a former U.S. representative and U.S. senator representing Colorado, praised Walberg for "asking some tough questions that need to be asked.

"The AMA doesn't understand why the Centers for Disease Control is involving itself in motorcycling when it is supposed to be protecting Americans from diseases," Allard said.

"Motorcycling is not a disease that needs to be eradicated," he said. "It's a legal form of transportation and a source of responsible recreation for millions of Americans nationwide.

"We anxiously await the CDC's answers to Rep. Walberg's questions," Allard said.

The AMA strongly advocates helmet use but believes adult helmet use should be voluntary. Simply put, mandatory helmet laws do nothing to prevent crashes. The AMA supports actions that help riders avoid a crash from occurring, including voluntary rider education, improved licensing and testing, and expanded motorist awareness programs.

Joke of the Day

Iron Horse Helmets joke of the day time.  Why do we have the joke of the day?  Easy, I run out of things to type about.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Spinning Image Thursday

I know it has been a long time, but spinning image Thursday is back.....Get ready for the motion sickness:















Man, I have seen a lot of Balaclava's today. 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Look what I saw yesterday.

I saw this lady riding down the street yesterday with out pink motorcycle helmet mohawk. I just love seeing our stuff in action!

Also, my iphone takes awesome pictures while I drive.  Thank you Steve Jobs.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

This is My Glock, there are many like it but this one is mine!

Carlton Dodd loves his Glock 21 and we love making shirts. That means that Carlton and Iron Horse Helmets are a match made in heaven. Here are your new shirt:

Monday, November 18, 2013

This is possible the dumbest idea ever

fogthief_RGBSo what is the FogThief?
The FOGTHIEF™ is a patented product and can be found under . The FOGTHIEF™ is a proven light weight concept in the prevention the fogging up all sports helmets including motorcycle helmet visors, eyeglasses and sunglasses worn inside the helmet. The warm breath from your mouth and nose is directed downwards to beneath the chin area. While breathing normally through your mouth the FOGTHIEF will direct this heated breath safely below your chin and out below your helmet therefore averting the fogging up problem. While stationary at traffic situations or in slow moving traffic the FOGTHIEF™ keeps the shield and glasses clear of fog and moisture. (no longer needing to lift the visor to clear the moisture/fog).
3/4 view
3/4 view
Great for cold morning tracks and time spent high on the mountain trails while snowmobiling. FOGTHIEF can be worn in all styles of helmets and weighs only 1/2 ounce, and will fit conveniently into the top pocket of your jacket. As easy as it is to insert the FOGTHIEF into your mouth… you can remove just as easy when the sports activity is complete and the helmet needs to be removed.
Click to full view
Click to full view

Close Up View of the Fog Thief

We gathered up a couple of close view shots to show you of the Fog Thief. This way you can see the device in great detail.
Front view
Front view
3/4 view
3/4 view
The simple design allows the Fog Thief to stay discrete in the helmet to take up as little space as possible. Don’t let the small size fool you! The Fog Thief effectively keeps the condensation out of your helmet so that your vision is not impaired.
Are you ready to pick up your own Fog Thief?

3D Modeling of the Fog Thief

To give you an idea of just how the Fog Thief would fit in to your helmet, we have compiled a 3D model of the set up. As you can see from the image below, the simple device will easily fit inside the helmet to direct the moisture outside to prevent the fogging.
Check it out!
3D Model of the Fog Thief
3D Model of the Fog Thief – Click to Full View

What is Fog Thief?

So just what is Fog Thief?
Fog Thief is a new brainchild of FunProjex. It is used to prevent the fogging of helmet visors, eyeglasses and sunglasses worn inside the helmet. Imagine riding your motorcycle or snowmobile and being able to see clearly! You can drive safe without lifting the visor of your helmet or going helmet-less.
Warm breath from the nose and mouth is directed down to beneath the chin area and transports the air outside the helmet. Without the warm breath being trapped inside the helmet, your glasses and helmet shield are kept clear of fog.
The Fog Thief
The Fog Thief

Friday, November 15, 2013

Retro Black Metal Flake Open Face Motorcycle Helmet

Retro Black Metal Flake Open Face Motorcycle Helmet
This is our Retro Black Metal Flake Open Face Motorcycle Helmet on some modeling shoot. 

We send many motorcycle helmets to magazines whenever they call.  We just sent a lot of helmet to the Newyorker and Elle magazine.  Check them out when you get a chance. 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Halloween motorcycle helmets

Halloween is over and our Halloween motorcycle helmet contest is also over.

Who were the winners?  I don't know their names!

But I do have pictures and if Instagram has taught us anything, is that people don't read anyway.

Drum roll please:
halloween motorcycle helmet

halloween motorcycle helmet

halloween motorcycle helmet

halloween motorcycle helmet

halloween motorcycle helmet

halloween motorcycle helmet

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

I tried customer service once!

I am not sure if you know this, but I hate walking out into the warehouse.  
First, it is filled with warehouse workers.
Second, it is hot...Really hot.
Third, it is big...Like 47,000 sqft.  

So, I naturally didn't want to help Jason Crouch when he walked in today.  I wanted to tell him to get on the internet like the rest of the world does....But I didn't.  Why didn't I?  Because the boss told me to help him.

I think I did the best customer service job ever.  I showed him the Polo Novelty Motorcycle Helmet, German Novelty Motorcycle Helmet and the Gladiator Novelty Motorcycle Helmet.  I even took pictures so he could see how they looked on his head.

Jason bought the Gladiator Novelty Motorcycle Helmet with a 1036 spike stripe....And I made absolutely zero commission on the whole deal. 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Jarrett Ferrier sent us this awesome picture

easy rider motorcycle helmet
We would like to thank Jarrett Ferrier for sending us this picture of him in his new Captain American 3/4 shell motorcycle helmet. I hope he is giving us a thumbs up and not hitchhiking.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Glow in the Dark Neoprene Half Face Masks

We just got it 3 new Glow in the Dark Neoprene Half Face Masks.  Our  Glow in the Dark Neoprene Half Face Masks will help the knuckle heads on the road see you better at night....Or maybe it should help them see you better at night.

We don't charge anymore for the  Glow in the Dark Neoprene Half Face Masks.....But maybe we should, since they are so cool.
Glow in the Dark Bone Breath Neoprene Half Face Mask
Glow in the Dark Bone Breath Neoprene Half Face Mask

Glow in the Dark Teeth Neoprene Half Face Mask
Glow in the Dark Teeth Neoprene Half Face Mask

Glowing in the Dark Mo Scruffy Neoprene Half Face Mask
Glowing in the Dark Mo Scruffy Neoprene Half Face Mask

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Bad Ass!

coolest biker ever
Think your bad?  Think you're thought?  Well you might be, but do you ride down the streets of Las Vegas with a machine gun?  Do you ride with absolute impunity?

Iron Horse Helmets salutes this lone rebel on his stock motorcycle with saddle bags.  We salute you and want to warn you about the bus load of kids coming up on your right...Remember - Don't hit kids, they have guns now. 

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Are helmet laws needed?

STERLING – Since September, two people have died in motorcycle crashes in the Sauk Valley. For the year, according to preliminary numbers from the Illinois State Police, there have been five deaths.
None of the victims were wearing helmets, and four of the five deaths were caused, at least in part, by head trauma.

The most recent death, that of 21-year-old Brandon Kiro, happened on Oct. 8 in Sterling. Police say that Kiro was riding east on East Lynn Boulevard shortly after 10:30 p.m. when he lost control of his motorcycle, which skidded across the road before coming to a rest in the westbound lanes.
jerry bryant wrote on November 9, 2013 9:38 a.m. ...
According to Ms Warren's statistics, 4 out of the 5 recent victims were also aged 21 years and under, which leads one to speculate that inexperience may be a contributing factor. Would the author condone more restrictions on younger riders? How about mandatory helmet use by bicyclists, roofers or anyone engaged in behavior involving risk including the operation of automobiles. Obviously, helmets or any other type of body armor, gives additional, personal protection. The freedom of choice lies in weighing these protections against their inconvenience.

Steven Humphrey wrote on November 9, 2013 12:59 p.m. ...
"Obviously, helmets or any other type of body armor, gives additional, personal protection. The freedom of choice lies in weighing these protections against their inconvenience." It's absurd for car drivers to get seat belt tickets if motorcyclists still want to continue the "personal choice" argument for not being mandated to wear helmets. I'd prefer to not have to pay for seatbelt tickets as a personal choice rather then being mandated to wear it, and fined. I suppose the most unsafe modes of transportation should continue to be rewarded with the option of personal choice while the rest of us.
Steven Humphrey wrote on November 9, 2013 1:01 p.m. ...
us have to be told what to do to better insure our transportation safety. Only those nostalgic of a "simpler" time would continue to advocate for personal choice when it comes to wearing a motorcycle helmet. Age is not a factor, hitting your head on the pavement is the factor. It's basic, and common sense. The State would do well to mandate helmets ...if for nothing else to reduce the amount of TBI's that could possibly be prevented. Same idea with frontal airbags, and side airbags in later model vehicles. Either way ... you should not get the benefit of a choice.

Steven Humphrey wrote on November 9, 2013 1:11 p.m. ...
What I don't understand is why private insurance companies have not ever jacked rates through the roof based on wearing a helmet or not (prerequisite questions to assess risk of insuring a client), such as running a DMV report for tickets or accidents, it should be one more box that is ticked and premiums should be higher for those that want to recklessly unprotect themselves.

Steven Humphrey wrote on November 9, 2013 1:17 p.m. ... An interesting question to ask ... How much do insurance premiums annually rise as a result of motorcycle accidents that require medically intensive treatment due to not wearing helmets. Hell, they ask me if I have a car alarm to prevent theft of a 15k vehicle, you know that medical bills after a motorcycle accident are ten fold of that if an accident were to occur with an unprotected (helmet -less) motorcyclist, yet motorcyclists do not pay for that kind of risk and get to share the road with the rest of us. While we all most likely are absorbing the true costs of such riding behavior.

Original article:


AMA Press Release:

A federal task force is poised to recommend that all states have mandatory helmet laws for all motorcyclists, which the task force says would reduce injuries and deaths as well as result in economic benefits, the American Motorcyclist Association reports.

The AMA has repeatedly expressed its belief that motorcyclists would be best served if regulators and legislators focus on programs to prevent motorcycle crashes from occurring in the first place. The AMA also said that any economic benefits would be insignificant since health care costs related to motorcycle crashes are minuscule in the context of total health care costs nationwide.

“The AMA continues to strongly encourage the use of personal protective equipment, including gloves, sturdy footwear and a properly fitted motorcycle helmet certified by its manufacturer to meet federal safety standards,” said Wayne Allard, AMA vice president for government relations, on Nov. 7. “But we also believe that adults should have the right to voluntarily choose to wear a helmet.”

The Community Preventive Services Task Force, whose 15 members are appointed by the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, makes recommendations to the CDC and reports to the U.S. Congress about community preventive services, programs and policies to improve health. The task force is preparing to recommend that all states have universal helmet laws, which means that all riders, regardless of age, would be required to wear helmets.

The task force is ready to make the recommendation based on its belief that a universal helmet mandate would reduce motorcyclist deaths and injuries, and that mandating riders to wear helmets would result in economic benefits. The task force believes health care costs for injured helmeted riders wouldn’t be as high as those of injured un-helmeted riders, and also that universal helmet laws would result in fewer missed days of work for injured riders.

The CDC, which oversees the task force, is a federal agency under the Department of Health and Human Services and is headquartered in Atlanta. Its official mission is to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the United States. “Whether diseases start at home or abroad, are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease and supports communities and citizens to do the same,” the agency says on its website. Explaining the AMA’s opposition to the proposed recommendation, Allard cited the official AMA position on voluntary helmet use. “The AMA strongly advocates helmet use, but helmet use alone is insufficient to ensure a motorcyclist’s safety,” said Allard. “There is a broad range of measures that can be implemented to improve the skill of motorcycle operators, as well as reduce the frequency of situations where other vehicle operators are the cause of crashes that involve motorcycles.”

In its position on voluntary helmet use, the AMA noted that mandatory helmet laws do nothing to prevent crashes. “The AMA supports actions that help riders avoid a crash from occurring, including voluntary rider education, improved licensing and testing, and expanded motorist awareness programs,” said Allard. “This strategy is widely recognized and pursued in the motorcycling community.”

Concerning the task force claim of economic benefits, the AMA noted that injured motorcyclists are less likely than the general population to use public funds to pay for injuries sustained in crashes, and are just as likely to be insured as o
ther vehicle operators.

In addition, the AMA said the costs associated with the treatment of motorcyclist injuries account for a tiny fraction of total U.S. health care costs. An even smaller portion of these costs is attributable to un-helmeted motorcyclists, the majority of which are paid by privately purchased insurance. In 2000, for example, approximately 1.55 percent of total U.S. health care costs were attributable to all motor vehicle crashes. Motorcyclists involved in crashes represented a minuscule percentage of this figure.