Max Draitser - Southern California Bicycle Attorneys

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Are you accidentally making your helmet less effective?

If you are an avid cyclist, you probably have some strong feelings about helmets. Still, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says riding helmets reduce the risks of both dying and suffering a serious brain injury in a cycling accident.

After choosing a safety-rated helmet that fits you properly, you can probably count on your helmet to protect your head. Nevertheless, it is possible to make cycling helmets less safe inadvertently.

Attaching decals

Your helmet’s manufacturer devoted significant resources to designing and testing your helmet’s shell. If you attach stickers or decals to the outside of your helmet, you may change the way it performs in a collision. You may also block ventilation holes, causing discomfort on your rides.

Accumulating grime

When you ride, your helmet collects sweat, oils, dirt and grime. Each of these may cause the padding inside your headgear to deteriorate and become less effective. Consequently, you should regularly clean your helmet according to its manufacturer’s instructions.

Ignoring drops

You probably realize the importance of replacing your helmet after any collision where you hit your head. Yet, dropping your helmet may cause imperceptible cracks to form in its shell or other layers. By replacing your headgear after you drop it, you ensure you have as much protection as possible during a crash.

Like virtually everything else, your riding helmet has an expiration date. Ultimately, by regularly inspecting your helmet for signs of damage and replacing it when necessary, you may improve your chances of walking away from a crash.