Avoiding catastrophic injuries and consulting your Charlotte accident attorney for advice
Charlotte accident lawyers are on the front line when it comes to being an advocate for bicyclists who suffer catastrophic injuries in a crash. They are intimately aware of the significant role that wearing a bicycle helmet can have. Studies have shown that wearing bike helmets will either prevent or minimize head injuries that are sustained in an accident. Just as importantly, your decision to wear a bike helmet will be highly instrumental in helping your attorney to obtain fair and reasonable compensation if your accident results in litigation.
The helmet debate
Unfortunately, opponents of bicycle helmet laws have been strident in their position, causing serious debate over the safety factor of using a bike helmet. They purport that any benefit to wearing a bike helmet is offset by the sense of security that bicyclists gain from wearing helmets. They say that cyclists who wear helmets engage in more risky behaviors and ride with greater speed. This argument is somewhat ridiculous. The fact of the matter is that cyclists, who wear helmets, do so because they understand the inherent danger of riding a bike in traffic. Those who wear safety equipment are actually more safety conscious. Wearing bike helmets does not encourage risky behavior; this is the same ridiculous argument that opponents of seat belts used to try and confound the public when mandatory seatbelt laws were introduced. Ask any healthcare professional, and they will be eager to point out that wearing a helmet can reduce the risk of head injury in a crash. Studies by the National Transportation Safety Board purport that a person wearing a helmet decreases their risk of head injury by up to 85%. According to the Center for Disease Control, helmet usage can reduce the risk of brain injury by 88% and the risk of facial injury by 65%. In 2010, there were 616 cyclists killed on the roads; 429 were not wearing helmets. Against this backdrop, it is not surprising that North Carolina requires that you wear a bicycle helmet on public roads, public paths and public rights-of-way for every cyclist who is under 16 years old.
Use your helmet
Helmet use is a crucial factor with regard to the context of litigation as well. If you are involved in a bicycle related crash and you end up with a head injury or traumatic brain injury; if you were not wearing a helmet, this fact could be used against you in litigation, even if you are over18 years old and are not mandated by law to wear a helmet. In North Carolina, as it is in many states across the country, a jury is allowed to consider the fact that your failure to use safety equipment such as a helmet; and to determine if this caused or contributed to the injuries you suffered in your crash. Even if the other party can be found at fault, you may be found to be partially or completely responsible for your own injury. The end result can be a significant reduction or elimination of your ability to recover damages. Even if your accident attorney gets you the maximum compensation possible, traumatic brain injury is a serious and sometimes lasting consequence for those involved in bicycle accidents. Do yourself and your family a favor and wear a helmet whenever you decide to ride your bike.
Speak with one of the top accident attorneys in Charlotte, NC
Even if you are not sure that you have a case, you have nothing to lose by seeking advice from a car accident injury attorney from the Olive Law Firm. They have been helping residents of North Carolina seek justice for nearly 60 years. Consult with an accident lawyer from the Olive law Firm, servicing Charlotte, Raleigh, and Asheville, NC, as well as the surrounding areas.