According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcycle helmets are approximately 37 percent successful in stopping motorcycle accident fatalities. This number rises to 41 percent when it comes to passengers riding on motorcycles. While the NHTSA strongly recommends wearing a motorcycle helmet, this is not mandatory in all states. In 2012, only 19 States required that all motorcyclists wear helmets while on the road. Twenty-eight states, including Montana, require helmet use for certain motorcyclists, for example, by those who are younger than 18 years old.

In states without universal helmet laws, a substantial portion of motorcyclists killed in 2012 — over 60 percent — failed to wear a helmet. In states that have universal helmet laws the percentage of motorcyclists killed was substantially less at only 9 percent.

According to NHTSA data, helmets saved the lives of nearly 1,700 motorcyclists involved in accidents in 2012. If all motorcyclists had used motorcycle helmets, the total number of lives saved would have increased by another 780 lives. Though helmets help in saving lives, according to NHTSA in 2012 nearly 4,900 motorcyclists were killed. In fact, motorcyclists were over 25 times likely than an occupant in a car to be killed in a motorcycle accident.

Regardless of helmet use, motorcycle accidents can happen at any time and result in severe injuries and death. For anyone who has suffered injuries in a motorcycle and car collision, for instance, may want to have the facts of their case evaluated. If their injuries are caused by another motorist’s negligence, they may be able to seek compensation.

Source: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, “Traffic Safety Facts,” Accessed Sep. 23, 2014