With so many beautiful summer days, did you notice any motorcyclists not wearing helmets?
As of April 12, 2012, the Michigan’s Motorcycle Helmet Law was passed, and now it is rare to see a motorcyclist riding with a helmet. For the last 45 years, Michigan required motorcyclist to wear helmets. An article published by Michigan.gov, Michigan’s Official Web Site states:
“Michigan originally implemented its helmet-use law in 1967 to comply with U.S. Department of Transportation requirements for federal funds. That requirement is no longer in place. With this change, Michigan joins the Great Lakes states of Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Pennsylvania that have repealed or amended helmet-use laws to give riders a choice.”
This law does not just affect the 235,000 registered motorcyclists. It impacts everyone on the road. For those who are for the law or against it, there are some stipulations that need to be taken note of before anyone takes their helmet off.
Before you take off your helmet:
- You must be 21 years of age.
- You will need to have at least $20,000 in medical coverage.
- You are required to have a motorcycle endorsement for the past 2 years or pass a motorcycle safety test.
While these stipulations are to ensure the safety of the public, police say that it may be difficult to enforce these restrictions. Because of the new law, police can no longer pull people over for not wearing a helmet and it will be difficult to make sure the riders are following through with the stipulations.
Opponents of the law fear more death and injures will be caused. FoxNews.com reported:
“About five times as many no-helmet biker deaths occur in states with less restrictive laws, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study found. These laws save lives,” said Rebecca Naumann, an epidemiologist and the study’s lead author.”
However, supporters of the law, like spokesperson for the Michigan chapter of American Bikers Aiming Toward Education, believe that more tourism will come into the state and say that Michigan loses millions of dollars each year because of the 1967 helmet law.
Whether you are a part of the 235,000 registered motorcyclists or not, this law impacts you. Jim Rhoades, Legislative Director for American Bikers Aiming Toward Education, or ABATE of Michigan, said:
“We believe that the key to motorcycle safety, accident reduction and injury prevention lies in rider education, car driver awareness and license endorsement.”