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At present I have collection of almost all kinds of helmets. As a helmet reviewer I have to use various new helmets. Here, I would like to share my first experience with my second helmet to clear the doubt – ‘are half helmets safe?’
When I got my first motorcycle I purchased full face helmet. It was my first helmet which I used for one year. Soon after one year, I felt uneasy using helmet for my daily 36 km drive. Though it was safe I felt like I was carrying 2, 3 kg weight on my head. So I bought a half helmet.
It was lightweight and cosy. With this helmet I was enjoying my riding except for one day. It rained a lot one afternoon. I had to for my office work. In hurry, I started my motorcycle and drove fast. Just after five minutes on a turn my motorcycle slipped on a lump of mud I fell down on head very badly. Thanks to my helmet there was no injury to my head. It was a half helmet.
The purpose of telling this incident is half helmets can be safe but it depends upon the nature of mishaps. And after this mishap I got the answer to this question- are beanie helmets safe?
Are half helmets safe? Yes or No
Yes, half helmets are safe. And no, they can not be. Don’t be confused. As I said earlier it totally depends on where you use them and how the incident happens. I got no injury to my head because I fell on backside of my head. But, I could not have escaped face injury if I fell down on face side.
Let me clear my point. It saved my life but it could not have saved my face. It is not certainly safe if you use it in off road, in sports or you have habit of driving so fast.
The prime aim of wearing helmet is protection of head and brain. According to a study, responsibility of motorcycle helmet for safety contains many factors. It mainly associate with helmet type, motorcycle speed, type of motorcycle, manner of collision, culpability of rider. These are the factors that affect the percentage of fatality in an accident or mishap.
Type of helmet is not the only factor that effect the safety. However, different types of helmet have
different risk factors. If you look at the numbers, motorcyclists wearing novelty helmet are vulnerable to death by 5.4%. The number for motorcyclists wearing half helmets and modular helmet is 3.1%. For open face helmet it is 2.8% and 2.4% for the motorcyclists who wears full face face.
Though there is a little risk difference among half helmet, open face and full face helmet, we can not ignore the little bit risk. According to a statistics, half helmets provide protection to our brain in 38% accidents. This number is less as compare to open face and full face helmets. However, we can not say half helmets are not totally safe.
Are half helmets safe in some conditions?
Many people like half helmets. The reason behind this is a lot of ventilation, smart look and affordable price. Even cruisers like to wear this helmet. Half helmets can be safe if you use in proper place and manner.
The safety is in your own hand. If you drive motorcycle carelessly and without precaution, no type of helmet can protect you from mishaps and injuries. Therefore, blaming half helmets for safety is logically wrong. You can make your drive safe even wearing half helmets by following rules and regulations. As it is mentioned before, it can not give full protection in case of road race and off road motorcycle driving. So, before you jump into buying best half helmet you must take some things into consideration.
While buying a half helmet a question pop up in mind, ‘are half helmets legal and safe?’ Yes, they are. But for this you must see that it has DOT approval for safety standards. DOT ensures the safety features of the helmet. Therefore you should never buy a helmet that is not approved by DOT. Second this you should think about its look and design. Many motorcyclists go for half helmets for stylish look but eventually get disappointed when they find mushroom look on their head. Luckily, there are some best half-helmets no mushroom for you style.
Half helmet pros and cons
Some people want more freedom when it comes to motorcycle helmets. They want to enjoy the sound of traffic and nature, free air breeze and ‘burden free ride’. The pros are answers for why wear a half helmet.
- With half helmets come cool look. They are stylish and many of them have amazing designs printed on the shell. Pretty girls and boys prefer half helmets to show off.
- Half helmets have all freedom to wear goggles and other helmet accessories of own choice. Now these days half helmets have special arrangement for bluetooth and other communication system.
- No other type of helmet gives ventilation than half helmet. As the face side is totally open, motorcyclist gets maximum ventilation. Helmets full face helmets and helmets having shield can not provide this much ventilation.
- Half helmets are light in weight. This is one of the main reason why some people love half helmet. Full face and 3/4 helmets are comparatively heavy. Here, one doesn’t have to carry extra burden while riding.
- They provide the rider a wider view no other helmet can give it. It helps motorcyclists to pay attention to both sides of the road and ultimately taking right decision in trouble.
- One has to do no extra effort for communicating with other person while driving. With other type of helmet you can not do with such ease. There is no need to take this helmet off your head when you want to stop and have some snacks or coffee.
- Half helmets don’t cover your face fully. Therefore, there is no full safety. If something happens wrong, there is nothing to protect your chin part. Safety is the main concern for half helmets. That is why they ask – are half helmets safe!
- Half helmets can not protect you from dust, bugs and other flying objects in the air. You are helpless in such conditions as the front side of helmet is widely open. Dust and smoke can effect your visibility while driving.
- These motorcycle helmets can give a mushroom head look if not choose the right helmet. So, there is a high chance of driving with low feeling with such helmets.
- Half helmets are not at all good for rainy and winter days. If you are totally rely on half helmets, heavy rainfall and freezing cold air can make you stay at home. There is no special arrangement in these helmets to protect you from odd weather.
Now, if the question arises in your mind that is- are half helmets safe? You have right answer. It is up to you how and where you want to use a half helmet. Surely they can not give you full protection in certain conditions. But if you are obsessed with half helmets, there is no problem. You can use it for normal driving. The only thing you have to do is find the best half helmet with maximum features. Secondly, follow the rules and regulations, drive carefully and enjoy with a half helmet! What do you think – are half helmets safe?!