As the Covid-19 pandemic reared its ugly head across different states in the US, we experienced a decline in the number of motor vehicles on our roads as different social places such as gyms, hotels among many others closed up. On the other hand, bicycle sales increased as people looked for alternative ways to exercise. Sadly, with less traffic on our roads, cyclists felt the need to increase their speeds with some not exercising the option to use helmets.
Shocking facts: According to Advocacy Advance.org, an estimated 675 cyclists died during the year 2020, a decline from 846 from the previous year.
According to the data above, would you say it’s okay to ride your bicycle without a helmet? The answer is an emphatic NO!. Below, we look into some of the justified reasons as to why you need to strap on a helmet. Believe me, you’ll need it.
Just because it doesn’t feel comfortable, you don’t want your hair tangled, you can’t see properly, or you just don’t look cool in a helmet, whatever the reasons, you still need to appreciate the fact that your brain is a precious organ.
Just because your helmet doesn’t look cool (there are some really cool helmets out there) doesn’t mean it can’t do a pretty darn good job in protecting your vital organ, a serious injury, or even death. Wouldn’t you prefer surviving a crash with less brain trauma compared to a serious one?
You could still die with your helmet on, but it is far less likely to happen than if you didn’t have one on.
For the sake of statistical argument, according to a 1996 study that breaks down head injury risk per millions of hours traveled, the following figures were issued;
- Pedestrians 0.80
- Motorcyclists 7.66
- Motor vehicle occupant 0.46
- Cyclist 0.41
From the above figures, we can see that motorcyclists, pedestrians, and motor vehicle occupants are at a higher risk of sustaining head injuries while traveling. However, no one wears a helmet during a walk or in the car.
We might be reckless enough to ride or walk around without a helmet in such situations where we have a heightened statistical possibility of incurring a head injury. Therefore, is it not worse enough to not strap on a helmet when on a bicycle?
- How Do You Make Sure You Buy the Right Helmet for You and Your Bicycle
- Cheap Bike Helmets: Should you even consider them?
- Expensive Helmets: What makes their price so high?
Not only does a helmet enhance the capability of a cyclist seeing other people during adverse weather conditions, but it also contributes to the cyclist’s visibility to other road users. A rule of thumb when choosing a helmet is to choose one that’s brightly colored. Furthermore, you have the option of customizing your helmet by sticking brightly colored or glowing tape. This way, you become easier to spot from miles away.
There are plenty more reasons as to why helmets could work in your favor such as; keeping your head dry during adverse weather conditions, setting a good example among kids, being stylish, etcetera.
As we cap it off…
It goes without saying that helmets are vital components necessary for self-protection and protection for our loved ones. No matter how good a rider you are, it’s not enough to save your life. Keep in mind that accidents do happen and it’s up to you to do what’s necessary to safeguard or minimize the potentially harmful outcomes in the event of an accident.
Be safe out there!