Young, Male Motorcycle Riders Sustain More Brain Injuries

As the National Transportation Safety Board pushes for helmet use among all riders nationwide, a study has been released saying more young people are seriously being injured on motorcycles, suffering serious head injuries and long-term disabilities from not wearing a helmet.

“In 2006, about 25 percent of all traumatic brain injuries sustained in motorcycle crashes involving 12- to 20-year-olds resulted in long-term disabilities,” said study author Harold Weiss. “And patients with serious head injuries were at least 10 times more likely to die in the hospital than patients without serious head injuries.”

In 2006, a third of the 5,622 motorcycle accident victims younger than 21-years-old sustained traumatic head injuries, 91 of whom died. Nearly half of those injured or killed were between the ages of 18 and 20, and 90 percent were boys.

As a Seattle motorcycle and car accident attorney,, I urge all riders to wear helmets. Research shows helmet use reduces head injuries by 69 percent, and deaths from head injuries by 42 percent, according to the helmet laws’ study.

In Washington, it is illegal for all riders to ride without a helmet with a neck or chin strap, unless they are riding an antique motorcycle or motorcycle with seat belts and roll bars approved by the state patrol.

The study is published in the November issue of the journal Pediatrics.