Motorcycle accident prevention can begin before riders hit the road. Selecting the appropriate helmet can increase comfort and minimize the risk of severe or fatal damage.
A helmet is a protective gear designed to cushion the blow of a sudden and drastic collision. It insulates the head by absorbing the intense force. Per Arizona law, riders and passengers below 18 must always wear helmets. Any violating rider may be subject to applicable penalties.
Unfortunately, not everyone follows helmet rules. Almost half of the state’s recorded motorcycle injuries in 2021 involved operators and passengers who were not wearing helmets during the crash.
Thus, knowing how to pick the right helmet can make for a safe and enjoyable ride.
Finding a suitable helmet
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recognizes that choosing a helmet requires thorough consideration. So, they recommend taking the following factors into account to help match riders to helmets that properly fit:
- Shape: Every head’s form is unique, but the most common is intermediate oval. After determining whether one’s head is rounder or more elongated, NHTSA suggests testing if the helmet has pressure points. Painful points may indicate that the helmet is not a suitable choice.
- Size: A helmet’s dimensions must fit the head’s measurement. A helmet that cannot hold the head in place and is not tight enough around the cheeks is a sign that it is oversized for the rider.
- Style: Each helmet varies in looks and features depending on the kind of motorcycle and the occasions riders intend to use them. For example, modular helmets can cover the entire face or remain partially open. However, motocross riders may prefer off-road helmets for good airflow. Further, neon helmets offer an additional layer of security because their striking color can improve visibility.
Helmets must be compliant with the Department of Transportation’s safety standards. Certified helmets must always display their labels at the back to indicate that they passed the requirements.
Detecting unsafe helmets
Some sellers still prioritize profit over safety and sell fake helmets. Riders must be wary of these products because they may not be thick or strong enough to shield them from catastrophic wrecks.
No matter the shape, size and style, helmets may not guarantee complete protection. However, wearing them can significantly decrease the chances of deadly outcomes and save lives. Survivors facing legal action can soften the impact by seeking legal counsel.