As the middle of the summer approaches, many Ohio residents continue to take advantage of the warm weather by taking their motorcycles or ATVs out for a spin. According to Ohio law, motorcycle riders over the age of 17 do not have to wear a helmet. Some prefer not to as they find it comfortable to let the wind flow through their hair or make an additional purchase.
However, the consequences of not wearing a helmet frequently show up in our state. The weekend of July 6 to 8 saw multiple motor vehicle accidents following our local July 4th celebrations. What makes this weekend stand out in particular is that each day had at least one fatality from a rider not wearing a helmet.
In Hartville, a 17 year-old boy was found dead after an ATV accident. The boy was a passenger of the vehicle before he fell off and struck his head on the pavement. The 30 year-old driver is under investigation. Unlike motorcycles, all ATV riders and passengers must wear helmets on public roadways, which the two appeared to be on at the time of the accident.
On the night of July 7, a 29 year-old man crashed his motorcycle into a car in Jackson Township and was thrown from his vehicle. The driver of the car was turning into a driveway and did not properly yield to the motorcyclist. While the patrol has yet to determine if alcohol was involved in the crash, there is confirmation that the biker was not wearing a helmet while he was riding.
Finishing off the weekend is a 34 year-old motorcycle driver’s fatal crash in Columbiana County. During the evening of July 8, the biker was going eastbound on State Route 39 in Washington Township. He went off the road and was thrown from his vehicle. The article states that no alcohol was involved and no helmet was worn.
Make protection a priority
Friday’s accident shows that passengers should not place all of their faith in the driver’s ability. Saturday’s demonstrates that you need protection against other drivers. Sunday’s exhibits that an off-road landing can be just as dangerous as concrete when you lack a helmet.
While a helmet may have not saved these victims’ lives, it would have significantly increased their chances of survival. These accidents demonstrate multiple circumstances that can lead to serious injury that worsens when the rider does not wear a helmet.