Motorcycle Helmet Laws
A vast majority of motorists, for lack of a better word, hate helmets. They find them either too bulky and suffocating or an impediment to their freedom. This is quite surprising considering the many benefits helmets carry, safety being the most obvious. Research by WHO indicates that wearing a helmet correctly can reduce the risk of death by up to 40%. Payer Law Group acknowledges that it can also reduce the risk of severe injury by up to 70%. Since helmets are so important, we should discuss helmet laws. In Orlando, Florida, whether one is required to wear a helmet depends on the age, and the sufficiency of the insurance policy.
A Breakdown of Motorcycle Helmet Laws in Florida
In Florida, these laws have been changed several times in the last few decades. After repealing the majority of the provisions in 2000, the law was updated in 2010 after research showed that deadly crashes had increased by 20%. Under Florida law, all motorcyclists are required to wear helmets that are securely fastened upon their heads. A motorcycle accident attorney will help you better understand these laws. Although all motorcyclists should wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle, there are some provisions to the law.
- Every rider under the age of 21 is required to wear a helmet
- Motorcycle riders over the age of 21 years can ride with no helmet as long as they have a medical insurance policy of at least $10,000
When shopping for a helmet, look for one that meets the safety standards set by the Department of Transportation. The helmet should meet Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 218, that is noted on the back of the outside of the helmet. According to this standard, a quality helmet should:
- Have sturdy chin strips
- Weigh about 3 pounds
- Have a thick polystyrene lining
- A face shield to protect the eyes from flying particles. If the helmet doesn’t have one, then the rider should wear goggles instead.
To better understand these laws, let’s look at some examples.
- Dave is 20 years old with an insurance policy that has $30,000 in medical benefits. Is he required to wear a helmet? The answer is yes. The law requires him to be at least 21 years of age.
- Ashley is 24 with an insurance policy of $11,000 in medical benefits. Is she legally required to wear a helmet? No. Ashley qualifies for the exception.
If someone else’s injuries cause a motorcycle accident, you might be able to sue for compensation. However, any motorcycle accident attorney will agree that if the crash involved you not wearing a helmet the case might not be that strong. You may even end up getting less financial compensation than you would have had you worn a helmet.
Helmet laws exist for our safety. If you or a loved one is involved in a motorcycle accident, Payer Law Group has the right motorcycle accident attorney in Orlando for you. Get free consultation by filling out our online contact form.