Safety on a motorcycle is of the utmost importance. Not only does this help protect you from devastating accidents and injuries, but it may also be a rule of law. Understanding Idaho’s motorcycle helmet laws is crucial for all passengers or riders.
Many people who ride their bikes safely and do everything possible to share the road may still wind up in a serious motorcycle accident. If this happened to you and you need clarity on your legal rights, now is the time to speak with a personal injury lawyer familiar with Idaho motorcycle helmet laws.
If you believe you’re entitled to compensation for your injuries from a motorcycle accident in Idaho, reach out to Sargent Law Firm Injury Lawyers now.
Does Idaho Have a Helmet Law?
Not every person riding on or operating a motorcycle is required to wear helmets. Instead, per Idaho Statute 49-666, riders under 18 must wear helmets anytime they’re operating a motorcycle. This also applies to motorbikes, ATVs, and UTV equipment.
Even if you’re not legally required to wear your helmet on your motorcycle in Idaho, it’s a good idea to do so to prevent life-changing consequences. Wearing a helmet on your motorcycle is one of the best ways to prevent critical injury or death. Research from the CDC shows that wearing a motorcycle helmet can reduce your risk of head injury by as much as 67%.
If you’re involved in an accident, the other party or insurance company may argue that you are partly at fault for your injuries if you were not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash.
Do You Have to Wear a Motorcycle Helmet in Idaho?
In Idaho, helmets are not required for drivers over 18 or for those situations in which the motorcycle is written or operated for agriculture purposes or on private property. Anyone under the age of 18, however, is required under Idaho motorcycle helmet law to wear a helmet any time they’re operating the bike.
Penalties for Violating Idaho Helmet Laws
Laws in Idaho explain when someone must wear a motorcycle helmet based on age, but there are no specific penalties in Idaho statutes for riding on or driving a motorcycle without a helmet. You may still be subjected to a fine for going without a helmet, especially if you are under age 18.
Benefits of Wearing a Motorcycle Helmet
Even though you may not legally be required to wear a motorcycle helmet in Idaho if over age 18, it is still a good idea to wear one to protect yourself in the event of an accident. Many different injuries are connected to the head because a motorcycle rider is likely to be thrown from the vehicle.
Research from the NHTSA found that hundreds of lives are saved every single year by motorcycle helmet laws in general. Nearly 60% of motorcyclists who are killed on the road do so without a helmet in states without strict helmet laws.
There are little to no protections for a motorcyclist’s head in the event of an accident. While a passenger or driver in a car has the benefit of a seatbelt, airbags and the seal protections of the car, which can all help to shield them from serious injuries, motorcycle riders do not have these same protections.
Motorcyclists are therefore likely to sustain a broad range of head, neck, shoulder, leg, internal and other injuries. One of these could be a traumatic brain injury, which happens to the brain tissue enclosed within the skull. This can be a catastrophic and life-changing injury for a motorcycle rider.
A traumatic brain injury can occur following a blunt blow to the skull, such as when fragments of the skull secondarily damage the victim’s brain tissue. Anyone thrown from a bike could strike their head on a nearby object or the pavement.
Anyone who rides on a motorcycle is at a significantly increased risk of suffering a traumatic brain injury. Signs of serious brain injuries include things such as memory loss, a serious headache, bruising of the eyes, loss of consciousness, leaking of fluid behind the ears, difficulty focusing and possible hearing loss or vision problems.
If you do purchase a helmet for your motorcycle, make sure it fits you well and that you adjust all straps to protect your head properly.
Can You Sue If Involved in a No-Helmet Motorcycle Accident in Idaho?
If you get into an accident on a motorcycle while not wearing a helmet, this could make things difficult from the perspective of pursuing a personal injury lawsuit. In the event that your case ultimately proceeds to trial against an at-fault driver, the jury may determine that your failure to wear a helmet amounted to some form of negligence, even if you were not violating the helmet laws in Idaho.
Especially if you are attempting to receive compensation for head injuries, be aware that a jury may still determine that your failure to wear a helmet is equal to negligence. Getting support from an experienced and qualified lawyer is essential anytime you find yourself dealing with the consequences of a motorcycle accident.
Accusations about head injuries when you were not wearing a helmet are important because of Idaho’s comparative fault law. Even if you were found to be partially at fault for an accident, you might still recover compensation for your injuries.
However, the person entitled to receive compensation is the one found less at fault. Since the determination of fault is vital for naming liable parties, you need an experienced legal representative to guide you through this process.
Get Help to See How Idaho Motorcycle Helmet Laws Influence You
If you’ve recently been hurt in a major motorcycle accident and weren’t wearing a helmet, there’s a lot on the line for your future. You need to ensure you have an Idaho personal injury lawyer who is familiar with the most common issues with motorcycle accidents in Coeur d’Alene.
Sargent Law Firm Injury Lawyers know what it takes to look at each aspect of a motorcycle case to help you put your best foot forward in a legal claim. Contact us today to learn more about protecting your rights in a serious motorcycle accident in Idaho.