Researchers from Virginia Tech and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety have conducted what has been called a first-of-its-kind study, and it should be of interest to bicyclists in New York. According to this study, bicyclists who wear urban-style helmets, with their solid design and lack of ventilation, are more than twice as likely to suffer injury in an accident.
To achieve their results; researchers used some of the latest techniques for simulating head injuries and tested various helmets. They developed twelve scenarios to test each helmet’s effectiveness from every angle, simulating everything from glancing blows to direct hits.
The latest helmets, which come with anti-concussion technology were demonstrated to have the most positive results. This technology is called the Multi-Directional Impact Protection System; it comes with an inner layer of foam that allows the head to slide and twist upon impact. The foam in urban-style helmets is thinner and easily compresses. A total of 30 helmets were tested; researchers plan on analyzing mountain biking and BMX helmets.
Bicycle accidents are all too common. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that in 2015, 81,000 people in America were sent to emergency rooms for bike-related head injuries. Though current standards can effectively test helmets’ ability to prevent skull fractures and death, they do not accurately reflect the nature of most real-world bike accidents.
When bicyclists are involved in car accidents through no fault of their own; they may be able to file a claim against the driver’s auto insurance company. A lawyer might be able to assist by having experts gather evidence and determine the full extent of their injuries, lost wages and pain and suffering. Information about the helmet that the victim was wearing could also come in handy. The lawyer may then decide to proceed to negotiations and litigate if these fail to result in the desired settlement offer.