According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcycle helmets are approximately 37 percent effective at preventing fatalities in the event of a collision. Most people readily accept the fact that helmets save lives because the reason why is obvious: They reduce the brain’s vulnerability to serious injury upon impact.
What is less obvious, though, is why riders should replace their helmets every three to five years. Some riders assume that helmet manufacturers merely support this recommendation in an effort to sell more gear, but this is simply not the case.
Manufacturers are not the only ones who recommend replacing a helmet every few years. Since the materials that make up motorcycle helmets can deteriorate over time, even those who have nothing to gain from higher sales, like various safety organizations, are adamant about spreading the word.
Worn, damaged, and inadequate helmets put riders at a higher risk of serious injury or death in a motorcycle accident. Sadly, even helmets that meet the federal safety standards can prove ineffective in a high-speed crash.
If you were hurt in a motorcycle collision, contact Campbell, House, & Cummins. Our compassionate injury attorneys handle accident claims throughout Louisiana. Call 318-855-0285 to schedule a case evaluation with an accident lawyer in Monroe.
How Often Should You Replace a Motorcycle Helmet?
In general, riders should replace their motorcycle helmet every three to five years and after every accident. According to the Snell Memorial Foundation, both manufacturers and safety experts arrived at this recommendation after assessing the durability of the various materials that make up a helmet.
There are several factors that will ultimately determine just how long a helmet remains effective at preventing serious injury. For example, if you drop your helmet frequently, you will likely need to replace it long before five years has passed. Sweat and hair products can also contribute to the deterioration of a helmet’s lining.
Finding the perfect helmet is challenging, though, which is why riders do not typically look forward to replacing theirs. Fortunately, you can increase the longevity of yours by:
- Storing it in a cool, dry place;
- Keeping it away from petroleum-based products like paint and fuel;
- Ensuring it is empty when you store it as any heavy objects placed inside can deform the foam over time;
- Skipping the hair products on days you plan on riding; and
- Wearing a helmet liner to protect the interior foam from sweat and oil.
Motorcycle helmets are similar to passenger vehicle seat belts in that both can reduce the severity of any injuries sustained in a collision; however, neither approach is foolproof. Even riders who wear helmets that are in perfect condition can end up seriously hurt following a collision, just as passenger vehicle occupants who wear their seat belts correctly.
If you were hurt in a motorcycle accident that was not your fault, contact Campbell, House, & Cummins. Our legal team has the knowledge, tenacity, and resourcefulness to go up against adjusters from even the biggest insurance companies.
Call 318-855-0285 to schedule a consultation with a motorcycle accident attorney in Monroe. If you want to learn more about accident claims in Louisiana, visit USAttorneys.com.