If you are a new motorcycle owner, there are several things you should know about helmets. Motorcycle helmets are designed to protect the driver and passengers in case of a crash. While some motorcyclists may not like the idea of wearing a helmet for a short trip to the store or around the block, helmets increase safety and are required by law.
1. Helmets Are Required in All Provinces
All ten Canadian provinces require that helmets be worn by anyone on a motorcycle, including passengers. Failing to wear a helmet may result in a ticket or additional fines, depending on the number of incidents the driver has had. However, Manitoba and British Columbia offer exemptions for specific situations, such as religious exemptions.
The helmets must also meet the safety standards to comply with the universal helmet laws in Canada. Helmets typically feature a small label to indicate that the helmet complies with the safety standards.
2. Helmets Are Proven to Increase Safety
Some motorists claim that helmets do not actually improve the safety of the driver.
However, there is a lot of evidence to support the belief that helmets are indeed safer.
For example, some bikers claim that helmets limit peripheral vision, impair hearing, and increase the risk of neck and spine damage. These claims have all been debunked.
Helmets that comply with the safety standards need to provide 210 degrees of vision. The average person can only view 180 degrees with their peripheral vision. Helmets also make it easier to hear important traffic sounds such as car horns and sirens by blocking out the noise of the wind.
Helmets also increase safety during an accident. The helmets are built to absorb the impact when your head hits an obstacle after an accident. This reduces the impact on your neck and spine and decreases the risk of major injury.
3. Helmets Come in Many Sizes and Styles
While helmets offer improved safety, they can still be cool to wear. You can find stylish helmets in a wide variety of designs, sizes, and styles.
If you do not like the idea of completely covering your head in a helmet, there are other designs that may suit your style preferences. You may prefer a smaller half helmet or an open face helmet.
The half helmet provides the least amount of protection. However, there are some models that meet the safety standards. The open face helmet offers moderate protection but lacks a cover.
4. You Can Find Helmets Equipped with Speakers
Helmets are permitted to contain speakers or earpieces for communication purposes only.
When connected to your Bluetooth phone, you can set up hands-free phone conversations.
However, you cannot use the device to listen to music or podcasts. It is only meant for answering or making phone calls.
The bottom line is that helmets protect your head and they are required by law. While you may enjoy the freedom of riding a motorcycle without a helmet, there is no excuse for not strapping a helmet onto your head.