Industry

Motorcycle helmets save £3bn claims US

In states without helmet laws, 79% of those killed weren't wearing a helmet

A US Federal study of motorcycling claims that requiring motorcyclists to wear helmets saved the economy $3bn (£1.91bn).

The study was based on 2010's figures and savings were made from a reduction in healthcare expenses, lost wages and other expenses including policing. The study also claims that deaths were reduced by 1,500.

Nineteen states and the District of Columbia have laws requiring anyone on a motorcycle to wear a helmet. Twenty-eight states have laws requiring helmet use by only some people, and three states have no helmet law. In states without helmet laws, 79% of the motorcyclists killed weren't wearing helmets, compared to 12% in states that require all riders to wear helmets.

In 2000, Florida relaxed its helmet laws and in the following two years, motorcycle-related deaths rose by 21%, while costs for motorcyclists with head, brain or skull injuries more than doubled, increasing from $21 million (£13.4 million) to $50 million (£31.9 million).

Motorcycle groups like ABATE have argued against mandatory helmet lawsa for decades, saying that motorcyclists should have the freedom to choose.

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