Motorcycle safety is important for everyone on the road, not just the motorcyclist. Understanding the rules of the road as they pertain to all vehicles on New Hampshire roads can help protect riders and passengers.
When it comes to helmet laws in New Hampshire, there is no law mandating that a helmet should be worn. Basically, the law allows anyone who rides a motorcycle with a windscreen to ride without a helmet. If the motorcycle does not have a windscreen then the rider needs to have some sort of eye protection.
The law is kind of weird because it technically says that a person under the age of 18 must wear a helmet, but it also says that if federal law doesn’t require a helmet as a condition to receive federal funds, then the rule is void. Because mandatory headgear is not currently a condition to receive federal funds, technically a helmet is not mandatory.
Even if a helmet is not mandatory, it may be a good idea to wear one. The leading cause of death in motorcycle accidents come from head injuries. Those individuals who do not wear a helmet and are involved in a crash are three times more likely to suffer a brain injury.
While a motorcyclist may feel he or she has a lot of experience on the road and can avoid being involved in an accident, it’s never easy to predict when another motorist will act negligently. In our next post we will talk a little bit about what federal law considers a safe helmet to be.