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Old 18th December 2012, 12:57   #16
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

I'm all for helmet campaigns and legislation and other measures that will get people using helmets, but there are times when I wonder "why?!"

I mean, if it's not already blindingly obvious to anyone who sits on a bike, rider or pillion, that a good full-face helmet will not only protect the head, save the user's life, save the face from injuries even in the event of a small fall and protect the eyes and face from dust, who are we trying to save here with all this effort?! If people can't figure out something that simple, for their own good, well, all the legislation in the World won't help. People like that will quote statistics to prove that helmets are not always effective; they will worry about their hair; they will use woefully inadequate head-lids in the place of a good helmet; they will say that it's "only for a short distance", ignoring the reality that an "accident" is called an accident precisely because you can't predict when or where it happens, short distance or long; they will carry the helmet on the mirror or handlebar and put it on, while riding(!) only when they see a cop in the distance.

But yeah, I know how tough it is to get even those dear to you on board with helmet usage. I simply refuse to take a family member on the bike unless they agree to wear the spare helmet we have at home. Causes some relationship friction, but that's better than friction burns on the face!

Last edited by am1m : 18th December 2012 at 13:00. Reason: Some more ranting! :)
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Old 18th December 2012, 13:29   #17
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

Quote:
Originally Posted by am1m View Post
I'm all for helmet campaigns and legislation and other measures that will get people using helmets, but there are times when I wonder "why?!"
I totally agree with am1m here! If someone just does not want to wear one, all the laws in the world couldn't make him do it, hair or no hair! And how much are we going to pressure the poor trafficops? Heck, even they don't bother with helmets most of the time!

If someone isn't wearing a helmet, it isn't much of a danger to other road users (unlike the high-beam and wrong-side problems). What if such a legislation is passed: that if a non-helmeted motorist is involved in an accident, the other party is not liable for any damages? Simpler for everyone no? Then maybe the buffoons will decide that their precious (little) gray matter is actually worth saving.

Cheers,
Rahul

EDIT: Oh, and ISI? What in the name of all the saints does it "standardise"?

Last edited by voodoochild : 18th December 2012 at 13:30.
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Old 18th December 2012, 15:15   #18
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

am1m

Sir,

I strongly believe in democratic rights and in principle am against a 'nanny' state. But there are strong economic reasons for a corporate to enforce such rules. Now call it self interest or 'enlightened' self interest, it makes sense not to lose one of your employees who is competent, well trained and is contributing! Even if you keep the human tragedy aside.

Often, many of the youngsters who lost their lives were significant earners for their families.

Yes they ought to know, but human beings are herd animals. There was a time when smoking was the 'in' thing. Today smokers are like untouchables! And there is less incentive to be a smoker today than in yesteryears. It took multiple measures to reach here and we are yet a long way to go.

I also think Indians are typically 'biradari may naak kat gayi' types, therefore I think public shaming seems to be a powerful tool. I have seen insurance claims, with a little bit of 'SAM' (swalpa adjust maadubeku) and other greasy incentives they will be managed at the lower levels. It depends on surveyors. I know many corporates 'help' their employees' families get insurance money with their purchasing clout.

I guess all measures that reduce mortality on the road may lead to better outcomes (pardon my eternal optimism) and probably a virtuous spiral.

The statistics are horrible. In AP alone every year about 10 thousand fatalities occur involving RTAs (road traffic accidents). You guessed it right, most of them would be two wheeler related mortalities. I have a simple thumb rule - multiply by 8 to get national statistics, you wouldn't be off the mark.

While one can castigate two-wheeler riders, but I also have seen enough buffoons in 4-wheelers who have nary a thought for either pedestrians or other road users.

Every now and then I ride my son's bike, an Avenger - and it scares the day lights out of me! Either I am getting old (unwilling to acknowledge) or people are getting less tolerant on the roads.

@ voodochild

Sir, if you see the average two-wheeler user - he/she is at an age where hope and hormones are at their highest. Rarely would you find an average biker worried about issues like death or ill-health. At least I can speak for myself when I was riding a bike, though I would always wear a helmet, leather gloves, proper boots/shoes and eye-wear, and maintain my brakes and the bike (as per the manual), I used to ride at fairly good speeds for the quality of roads that Hyderabad had to offer then. It never occurred to me that I was riding a basically unstable vehicle and that there are too many imponderables on the road, including sand, jay walkers, oil spills etc., I never changed my riding style till my wife became pregnant! And today it looks like a statistical marvel that I survived!

I would be sceptical if a bike rider would think about insurance claims after he is dead.

Last edited by Technocrat : 18th December 2012 at 23:48. Reason: OT content removed, please stick to topic, thanks
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Old 18th December 2012, 15:58   #19
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gansan View Post
Saw a traffic police signboard about helmet usage during a recent visit to Tuticorin:

"If you value your software,
Don't forget to wear your hardware!"
There was another good one that i saw.
It had Lord Ganesha saying "Not everyone gets a replacement like me... Wear Helmets!"

On a serious note, I really think one think that will work is to de-glamourise the concept of helmet-less riding. I really think this can start with Bollywood. If films can be censored and film-makers can be censured for showing smoking/drinking scenes, why not a similar logic with respect to helmets? I know that John Abraham is supporter of using safety gear; and if SRK and Sallu Bhai can follow suit, and this makes their fans want to gear-up, then some good would have finally come out of thought-less imitation of our movie stars.

Unfortunately in our movies, the thumb rule seems to be - bigger the bike, lesser the safety gear.
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Old 18th December 2012, 16:39   #20
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

Quote:
Originally Posted by soonya View Post
Sir, if you see the average two-wheeler user - he/she is at an age where hope and hormones are at their highest. Rarely would you find an average biker worried about issues like death or ill-health.
Sir, it isn't much of a statistical miracle that you survived. Its just that traffic was much sparser then! Now it has become an adrenalin rush to even just get into third gear! And I'm sure most of us would call ourselves enthusiastic riders, but it gets borderline when one is doing it wearing a Tshirt and chappals.

But what you say is right: The 'hope & hormones' rider will not listen to a preacher. Or the cop who pulls him up. In fact, it is the "Bikerboyzz for life!" business that gets them in trouble in the first place.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kaushik60 View Post
On a serious note, I really think one think that will work is to de-glamourise the concept of helmet-less riding. I really think this can start with Bollywood...
I'm sure they'll think its really cool if a Kapoor or Khan says "without a helmet, bonnet just bashes your head in. With a helmet, YOU can bash bonnet in! And....live!"
Ain't no way Rajni'd say that!

Cheers,
Rahul
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Old 18th December 2012, 16:41   #21
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

This is one of the ways, how people wear helmet in Bangalore (not checked in other places, so no comments there).

This is risky for them and others (in case the helmet falls off)


[image source: internet]
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Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET-dsc01395.jpg  

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Old 18th December 2012, 16:49   #22
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

Quote:
Originally Posted by soonya View Post
I guess all measures that reduce mortality on the road may lead to better outcomes (pardon my eternal optimism) and probably a virtuous spiral.
You're quite right and I agree, it's just that watching how people find ways to work against their own self-interest in so many ways, added to the weak enforcement of rules, I sometimes wonder why bother to have such rules.

The smoking example may not be quite the same thing- a smoker puts other non-smokers at risk too, so a rule against smoking in public is one thing (note: I used to smoke for 10 years). But a biker without a helmet puts himself most at risk. That's what I sometimes wonder about, should there be rules and the attendant enforcement cost/effort to stop people from doing things that clearly have an adverse effect on their own (and not other people's) well-being; shouldn't they/their families be the ones thinking about their own safety/health and doing the self-checks/enforcement.

But yes, I do agree with you about all possible measures to reduce mortality.

PS: No "sirs" please, we're all equals here on the forum!
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Old 18th December 2012, 17:24   #23
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@ voodoochild

Yes you are right. The traffic was sparser, that did not stop me from having some not too gentle crashes! Ask my crash scarred Vega helmet/s, the best money could buy then! And compared to a Yamaha FZ an Ind-Suzuki was feather light with the rear having a mind of its own and the skinny and pathetic rubber was a challenge as well!

Again you are right about the 3rd gear adrenaline. That led me to get two trikes built which any way one cannot drive beyond 40 kmph. Once a biker always a biker, but with an additional safety wheel!

However, I never miss an opportunity where I can cajole a junior colleague to part his bike for a short TD!

Like they say when you want compliance or change in an organization or a society, you should capture the police and the school. There have to be both disincentives and incentives and probably a view about safety.

On a different note, generally there is a great apathy with us Indians where safety is concerned. When I installed fire extinguishers in my new home many of my colleagues thought I was paranoid, including my family members! I do share with them them an instance where I could douse a fire in the IT company that I worked for and saved a few guys from catching fire. That would not have been possible without learning from the fire drills where I learnt to use the extinguisher and the habit of always noticing the fire extinguishers when I go to a new place.

Emergencies probably cannot be avoided nor predicted, but we can plan for responding and protecting ourselves better IMHO.

To compound our apathy, the licensing in the MV dept., often is a farce. And I also do see folks spending on expensive sun glasses but penny-pinch when buying a good helmet. Such is life.

Being an optimist, I think we will progress through punctuated equilibria (inertia) perhaps.

Mods, if you think any part of this post is OT you can remove it.

@ 500 contycruiser

Nice pic. I have seen people keeping the helmet between their legs on the tank and also on the mirror!

@am1m

Agree with you. And thanks for pointing me to the 'sirs', will keep in mind. And congrats for quitting smoking, one of the most difficult behaviors to change I guess.

Last edited by moralfibre : 18th December 2012 at 18:12. Reason: Back to back posts.
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Old 18th December 2012, 18:04   #24
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

Driving belt-less also puts only the driver/passenger at risk. But there is enforcement for that. So no reason why it should not be there for helmet-less riding.

Also, even for the advanced nations (US/EU) etc, I am sure things happened over time for them to reach the stage now where everyone wears belts/helmets and enforcement would have been key in the initial stages. India is on the path to getting there and enforcement would go a long way in us also getting there eventually.
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Old 18th December 2012, 18:24   #25
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

Hello All,

Probably most us of here & also others who drive two-wheelers know very well what is to be done & what not. But somehow we get a feeling of enjoyment by not following what feel it is true. That is probably only reason why we see large number of people at red light engaging their vehicles in first gear & ready to zoom as soon as signal turns green (many times I feel whether I am standing in a race).

Ask anyone on street whether Helmets are necessary & 99% of time answer will be in positive, but still we see a large number of people not wearing Helmets. Same goes for wearing seat belts in cars & jumping red lights.

I feel somewhere we have lost discipline drivers or for that matter disciplined citizens. Also our "chalta hai" attitude leaves everything to a chance & "jugaad". I feel it is this casual attitude that needs to be changed for bikers in particular & citizens in general.

Thanks,
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Old 18th December 2012, 18:54   #26
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

There are lot of factors (individual perception / regulations / enforcement / awareness) involved here and I would not want to take the moral high ground over helmet-less people or judge their intentions behind not wanting to wear one. Today most of us wear seat-belts, but was it the same many years ago before this was enforced or belts provided in cars ? I started driving in 1986 on our M800, but did not wear belts for years. Ofcourse the car did not come with seat-belts, but even if it did, it is a moot point whether I would have worn them if the car came with it. There wasn't enough information available ~25 years ago about the benefits of being belted up.

Our next M800 had seat-belts, but I still continued without seat-belts because I never used them in the previous car and never felt the need for them. Then the TN Govt started a drive enforcing seat-belts and I changed overnight. Today I can't drive without belting up. So enforcement IMO is a main driver for bringing about change.

Last edited by supremeBaleno : 18th December 2012 at 18:55.
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Old 18th December 2012, 22:10   #27
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

I would like to share a incident which happened with me. Couple of years back, I was on a bike with helmet. Had stopped on a signal. There were a number of huge trees on the road side. Suddenly a branch of tree fell down( It as around 1.5 inch thick and a foot long). It came straight down on my head and then slid down on my hand. I noticed that the impact of the branch was big enough to create a scratch on the helmet. I think I was lucky enough to be saved my the helmet
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Old 18th December 2012, 23:00   #28
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

@ SupremeBaleno

Agree with you about the multiple factors which need to be addressed to ensure an outcome commonly adhered by a large number of people in a society.

I started wearing seat belts the time they were available. I guess it was a Zen Lxi that was the first car which I had which offered seat belts and I started using them since.

Interestingly one late evening I was driving along with a senior colleague in the passenger seat next to the me and I did not insist that he wear a seat belt. After the party I decided to escort a colleague (who was very drunk) till his home on the highway (he was weaving on the road, and banged into a curb on our campus trying to reverse). Once I saw him safely enter into the driveway of his colony I proceeded. But after a while as luck would have it, I had a truck suddenly take a right turn in front of me without any indication or warning and I had very limited choice except to stand on the brakes. And without ABS the car skidded and hit the side of the truck. While the radiator blew, I just had a chafe from the seat belt which worked very well. Unfortunately, my co-passenger who was not wearing a seat belt was thrown forward and hit the glass in front and injured himself badly. It was a harrowing time till early morn to take him to a hospital and do the necessary x-rays etc., to assure myself that he was safe, and I could drop him in another car only in the morn. I saw the concern on his wife's face when we reached his house and I can still remember her sleepless face full of worry waiting for her man.

Since then, if I am driving I never start the car without my co-passenger wearing a seat belt. Even if it is a beloved family member. Once bitten...
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Old 19th December 2012, 00:05   #29
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

First hand experience,

Had a big accident on my bullet 6 years ago, my front 2 teeth broke, replaced with ceramics and a hairline fracture on my nose. Without the heavy duty Bieffe GP one helmet on my head, I could have easily died on the spot. Had it not been my helmet I would have been history. I can still remember the whole incident as a horror story and keep thinking what would have happened if I had not worn the helmet.

Wearing seatbelts and helmet is not a matter of choice or compulsion. Its simply how much you think your life is worth and what does it matter to others with you being alive. I make it a point now that I change my helmets regularly after certain period, for hygiene and safety, no matter how much they cost. I know many may not agree to this but its my head and no one else is going to save me.

Educating people or awareness doesn't really matter much to masses, its simple common sense which everyone is actually aware of but there is no remedy to ignorance. Its good that people like you guys in these forums try to educate and spread the pros and cons, but tell a smoker that he will die of cancer and see the reaction.

But also if 1 out of a million understands this after seeing our posts then I believe its worth it !

Team BHP Rocks !
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Old 19th December 2012, 10:56   #30
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Default Re: Pictorial : Why you should wear a HELMET

Though wearing complete riding gear will be very expensive as well as impractical for daily office commutes, a good helmet, thick trousers and a pair of shoes are the barest minimum for riding on our roads. And a pair of gloves, though I don't use one.

In a car, however rudimentary, we will not fall on the road. And a car will have crumple zones to absorb some of the impact.

We have to remember that in a motorbike, the rider himself is the crumple zone!
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