Motorcycle fatalities have increased by 66% since Pennsylvania modified its helmet law in 2003. While there’s some debate as to whether that is the result of an increasing number of motorcyclists or a lack of helmets, everyone has the same question: Do Pennsylvania motorcyclists need a helmet?
Pennsylvania motorcycle riders have some freedom of choice when it comes to helmets. Experienced motorcyclists face no helmet requirement. However, new riders and young adults face some restrictions.
Any Pennsylvania motorcycle operator planning to ride without a helmet must be over the age of 21 and have held their motorcycle license for two years. Alternatively, riders can take a motorcycle safety course approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.
Additionally, helmets must meet certain safety standards. These are easily identifiable by a “Department of Transportation” sticker on the back of the helmet.
While Pennsylvania does not require helmets, riders should take care when traveling. The surrounding states of New Jersey, New York, and Maryland all have mandatory helmet laws. For that reason, any motorcycle driver thinking about a weekend in the city should bring their helmets to avoid getting pulled over.
There’s no debate; helmets save lives. States with helmet laws have fewer motorcycle fatalities than those without helmet laws. Each year, 800 American motorcyclists would survive their accidents, if they had worn their helmets.
Helmets decrease the risk of suffering a head injury by 70%. More than that, people who wear helmets are twice as likely to survive a motorcycle crash as someone without protection.
While helmets aren’t required, going without one is a big risk.
If you or some you love suffered serious injuries in a motorcycle accident, you might have a case. If you’d like an experienced Pennsylvania car accident attorney from Slusser Law Firm to evaluate your claim, give us a call at (570) 405-9953 or send us an email.