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Use Your Head: Why Wearing a Bicycle Helmet Could Save Your Life

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Thanks to the weather and the scenery, the Sunshine State is the perfect place to pedal. But whether you’re a seasoned cyclist or a beginner, don’t forget how vulnerable you can be on the roads.

Now, with the risk of sounding like your mom, we need to talk about the importance of cycling safety gear. I mean, you’re growing on us, and we want you to stick around! Oh, and you need to tidy your room.

You may have caught our recent post on top tips for exercising outdoors safely, and we also talked about why Florida is the deadliest state for cyclists, so today we want to stress the importance of a helmet. After all, it could save your life.

The facts

You can’t argue with the statistics. Helmets reduce the risk of head injury by 88% and lower the risk of facial injury by 65%. A helmet is especially important in a busy area, on high traffic roads, or for mountain biking.

Elbow and knee protection is excellent, as well as the reflective strips that make you easier for cars to spot – but it’s the helmet that’s going to save your life.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) describes the ‘typical’ bicyclist killed on roads as a sober male over 16 not wearing a helmet, riding a major road, hit by a car.

So, why is bicyclist safety in Florida’s big cities ranking last? Many people become injured in a bicycle crash due to the negligent actions of drivers, failure of law enforcement to enforce bicycle and pedestrian safety laws, unsafely designed and constructed roads, and a lack of education among drivers on how to safely interact with cyclists on the roads.

The law

Whether you’re cycling on the sidewalk, roadway, or public property, the Florida law states that all bicycle riders and their passengers under the age of 16 must wear a helmet. Now, although no state has a law that enforces anyone over the age of 16 to wear a helmet, we believe that everyone should wear one, regardless of age.

Top helmet tips

Now that you’re convinced that a helmet is an essential kit for your cycling adventures, let’s make sure you pick up the right type, and that you’re using it correctly.

  1. When you’re shopping for a helmet, stop and make sure that the helmet carries a sticker from the Consumer Product Safety Authority (CPSA). This will ensure that the helmet has been tested and meets federal and safety regulations.
  2. Make sure that your helmet fits well, that it’s not too loose or likely to slip off while riding. The helmet needs to be firmly fixed to your head using the strap provided.

Back in gear

A bicycle injury can be a traumatic event and may lead to serious injury which can have you out of action for some time. If you find yourself in this position, you may need some specialist personal injury advice.  Jenkins Law P.L will help you reclaim your life after an accident and get things back in gear.

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