Helmet statistics spur call for no daylight driving
Statistics show that as daylight hours increase, daylight driving deaths also increase.
It was a mere 50 foot sail through the air, but at the end of it Lynne Rushton died. “Fifty feet is nothing,” said Highway Patrolman John Schultz. “She would probably have survived if she’d been wearing a helmet.”
Behind him, oblivious to the tone of our discussion, children played at Superman, jumping off the top of a four-story building onto the sidewalk, quickly rushing back up the stairs to try again. Just another day in suburban Fort Myers. The irony is that Rushton was a supporter of helmetless riding.
“This is just another example of how helmetless riding costs taxpayers money,” said Schultz. “While her insurance will cover her personal expenses, this will require a major advertising campaign, and you know how much television spots cost.”
All because she wouldn’t wear a helmet.
“It really is silly,” said Schultz. “She didn’t even need to be wearing the helmet: all she needed was to carry one with her. Sailing fifty feet through the air, she had time to put it on before coming down again.”
The Reader contacted American Medical Association podiatrist Roger Corman to verify that a fifty foot throw is as trivial as Schultz suggested.
“Definitely,” said Corman. “With a helmet, at least. It’s amazing what these safety devices can do. Just last week we had someone still in their car when it went through a metal compactor. The car was compacted to a three foot cube, and the passenger died. But if they’d been wearing their seat belt, who knows? They probably would have survived.”
In Texas, which also recently approved helmetless riding, the statistics were clear: more helmetless riders meant more helmetless deaths. According to police spokesperson Tom Vinger, the 1997 statistics, when helmetless riding was permitted, show clear results: motorcycle deaths remained the same, but many more of them were of helmetless cyclists. “The statistics are clear,” said Vinger, “if you look at them correctly. The more helmetless riders, the more helmetless deaths.”
State Senator Mike Moncrief noted that this new way of looking at statistics has uncovered many heretofor unimagined dangers. “Our biggest discovery,” said Moncrief, “is that in the summer months when there is more daylight, more automobile accidents occur during the daylight hours. As soon as we get this helmet thing worked out, we’re going to work to make it against the law to drive during the day in Texas. More daylight driving equals more daylight deaths. And in the end, it is the taxpayers who have to foot the bill.”