Helmets protect against fatalities, but Oklahoma motor vehicle accidents still cause serious injuries
Motor vehicle crashes claim lives and cause thousands of injuries, but it is important to remember how expansive the list of casualties may be. Not all victims are in a motorized vehicle, so the risk of harm affects motorcycle riders, bicyclists, e-scooter operators, and many others. These individuals are considered vulnerable road users because of how they match up against large vehicles. Data from the Oklahoma Highway Safety Office (OHSO) reveals the effects of this size disparity on motorcyclists: Almost 89% of all motorcycle accidents result in a fatality or injuries to at least one victim.
Oklahoma is a somewhat permissive state in that only motorcycle riders and passengers under 18 years old must wear a helmet. However, a legal requirement is not the only reason to put on head protection. Helmets improve survival in a Tulsa, OK motorcycle accident and can facilitate a full recovery for injured victims. The following figures are proof.
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Statistics on Helmet Use and Safety
Researchers have been studying the effectiveness of helmets for decades, evaluating how well they protect motorcycle riders, bicyclists, or other road users. Data and trends are telling:
- Motorcycle helmets are 37% effective in preventing fatalities among operators and 41 percent effective for passengers.
- It is estimated that helmets save almost 1,900 lives every year.
- If there was 100% helmet usage among riders, more than 750 fewer people would die in motorcycle crashes annually.
- When not wearing a helmet, 54% of bicycle riders involved in motor vehicle crashes are killed.
- More than 800 bicycle riders die in traffic collisions annually, the vast majority of which are in urban areas.
Perhaps because of lenient helmet laws, Oklahoma ranks at the bottom when it comes to lives saved, at 41 out of 50 US states.
Other Serious Injuries for Vulnerable Road Users
Head injuries are certainly among the most devastating a victim can suffer, but another trauma is still a concern. Certain factors affect motorcyclists and bike riders in specific ways. For instance:
- There is no protective metal barrier surrounding a person on a motorcycle or bicycle, so he or she will almost always be ejected. After the initial collision, a secondary impact could lead to serious trauma.
- Vulnerable road users are more prone to road rash, an injury that occurs when the victim’s skin skids along the surface of the pavement. Road rash features characteristics of a burn and an abrasion, so it is extremely painful.
- Because of where the impact occurs between an automobile and a motorcycle, a rider is at risk of sustaining serious injuries to the lower extremities.
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Set Up a Consultation with a Tulsa, OK Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
If you were hurt or lost a loved one in a collision, you may be entitled to compensation for a wide range of injuries and losses. Our team at Boettcher, Devinney, Ingle & Wicker will assist with the legal process, so please contact us to schedule a free case evaluation with an Oklahoma motorcycle crash attorney.
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