Welcome to Netrider ... Connecting Riders!

Interested in talking motorbikes with a terrific community of riders?
Signup (it's quick and free) to join the discussions and access the full suite of tools and information that Netrider has to offer.

Helmet-law protester dies from head injury

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by j3st3r, Jul 4, 2011.

  1. I considered posting this in the politics/legal section but as Australia has mandatory helmet laws that have, for the most part, across the board acceptance it seemed moot.
    If only this sort of irony was inflicted on those that seek to punish and legislate against motorcycles and riders.

    Helmet-law protester dies from head injury
    A MOTORCYCLIST protesting helmet laws has been killed when he was thrown off his motorcycle and suffered a head injury.
    Police said 55-year-old Philip A. Contos was not wearing a helmet when he rode with a group of bikers on Saturday afternoon in Onondaga, New York as part of a helmet-laws protest organized by the group American Bikers Aimed Towards Education, the Post-Standard reported.
    Contos hit the brakes on his motorcycle, skidded, lost control and was thrown over the handlebars.
    He was taken to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead, police said.
    An attending physician said Contos would have likely survived the accident if he had been wearing a regulation helmet.

  2. Mandatory helmet laws we may have, but i've seen some people, namely old timers up in the north shore of Sydney, cruising around sans helmet.

    By old timers i'm talking white haired gents in their 60/70's.
  3. Sympathies to a fallen rider, however, does anyone know the circumstances of the fall?

    Reading about a rider hitting the brakes, skidding and falling, suggests some kind of lack of braking skill. As Cheffie pointed out recently, gear isn't going to avoid you having a fall, however, good skills will go a long way to avoiding almost all reasons for a fall. Just something to think about.
  4. Protesting helmet laws is not done on a safety basis. No one other than the crack heads who think helmetscause neck injuries do so. it's a personal liberty argument
  5. I was trying to figure this out too. According to this story,
    The only thing I can think of is that he has been leaning into a turn and for some reason hit the brakes. Or there was oil/something slippery on the road maybe?
    Either way, as rob says, it suggests a lack of skill on the riders part.

    All that being said, still sad to see someone lose their life, no matter the circumstances
  6. It seems absolutly perplexing that mandatory helmet laws aren't in every western country. I couldn't even imagine jumping on the bike without one.

    Who has been riding in the States (in a state with no helmet laws)? What proportion of riders were wearing helmets? Did you wear a helmet?
  7. Even if we didn't have helmet laws, I'd wear a helmet just because I can't stand wind in my eyes and goggles are not for me.

    [MENTION=34670]grfxninja[/MENTION] grfxninja ...you know, I had another post which I cancelled because it was full of supposition... I guessed the rider was on a cruiser, slammed on rear brake, skidded and highsided. That article pretty much confirmed most of that.

    [MENTION=31554]toadcat[/MENTION] toadcat Helmet laws are an interesting mix between common sense and civil liberties.
  8. I rode across the USA last year, in Colorado it is 100% helmet law free, even still most were wearing them (though most bikes were obviously touring bikes of Harleys and Goldwings so most people were out of staters). In other states even though there was a helmet law such as Tennessee and Nevada you still saw riders without helmet.

    There are actually only a few states that are 100% helmet free. About half are 100% compulsary and the remainder either have age or insurance requirements (you have to wear a helmet if you don't have insurance of a certain level).

    I generally wore mine, mainly as I wasn't sure which states had which law and it is also disconcerting not to wear it even though I was on a Goldwing so the wind is not an issue.

    You guys criticising are missing the point, its not about whether it is safer, everyone knows it is not safer. He would say that it was his decision not to wear one, he now lives (dies) with the consequences of that decision. Some would like to ban bikes, but it is a personal decision to take the risks because of the enjoyment it brings, he would have said the same thing about a helmet. He understood the risks and were prepared to accept them for the freedom and feeling of riding without a helmet. He paid for that freedom but it was his choice to make.

    Personally I don't think the risks are worth it but I can see their argument for saying that they should have the choice (especially if they have insurance to cover them if the worst happens).
  9. That would be your personal decision. Do you believe that because you chose to wear a helmet I have to as well?
  10. Not at all.

    But do you then believe that I should contribute to your medical costs if you suffer life long paralysis (or similar) because of that decision, through my taxes?

    I don't.
  11. Hit the nail on the head =D>
  12. There definately is that argument, but the same could apply to any other dangerous activities such as rock fishing without a lifejacket, horse riding (which are more dangerous than motorbikes), or even eating junk food.

    Why should my taxes pay for saving those people?
  13. I'm with HCF.

    Can I take my helmet off now?

    (It would perhaps be a cheap shot, but not only am I privately insured but I am also a chain smoker. I pay quite a lot more tax than a non smoker whilst costing the medicare system nothing. Think of me next time you go to hospital for an injury, I won't begrudge you.)
  14. You will get a very robust counter argument to this statement in some parts the US. Whether they're using stats correctly or not, not everyone agrees that helmeted riding is safer.
  15. We treat people who smoke thier way into hospital don't we?
    Or people who inflict any number of other stupidity-related injuries.

    From the point of view of much of the rest of the population riding a motorcycle with a helmet is an unneessary risk and why should they pay for medical costs for idiots riding bikes?

    Not wearing a helmet strikes me as a foolish move.
    But there absolutely should not be a law preventing an adult from doing so.
  16. Just because someone argues a certain way doesn't mean that they don't know in reality they are not safer. They might argue that way because they want the outcome and want to diffuse the counterargument of safety which is a fairly strong position.
  17. Ok. let me put this to you. On what basis are you convinced that riding with helmets is safer?
  18. I am not touching this. Whether it is safer or not is moot, the important thing is that people should have the choice.
  19. The guy in the OP fell while not wearing a helmet. Hit is head and died from a head injury. I'd say that's a pretty good basis.