Legislation that would reduce requirements for wearing helmets on motorcycles in Tennessee has been passed by the Tennessee State Senate and will now advance to the full Senate for consideration. Known as Senate Bill 548, the motorcycle helmet measure would relax state helmet laws for certain motorcycle riders, which could ultimately increase the risk of life-altering injury or fatality from Tennessee motorcycle accidents. It is important that motorcycle riders and other motorists in Tennessee understand the changes that could take place should SB 548 be signed into law. If you have suffered serious injuries in a motorcycle accident in Tennessee, or if you lost a loved one in a fatal crash, contact our reputable attorneys at Michael D. Ponce & Associates today for legal help.
How the Bill Will Affect TN Motorcyclists
The proposed legislation would allow motorcycle riders over the age of 21 who have met state-mandated safety requirements to operate their motorcycles without wearing a helmet. To date, these Tennessee safety measures include meeting minimum insurance requirements, paying a $50 fee to the state, and completing a qualified safety course. If signed into law, the motorcycle helmet bill would mark “a departure from the norm for motorcycle riders in Tennessee,” says our law firm’s managing attorney and senior litigator, Michael D. Ponce. “We want to make sure everyone is aware of what is happening with regards to this issue and that people who are concerned make their voices heard with their representatives. We hope that however this issue is resolved that the safety of people on the roads of the state is the top priority.”
Our Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Can Help
According to the Tennessee Department of Safety, the state agency that tracks data regarding TN motorcycle accidents, there are more than 3,200 motorcycle crashes in the state of Tennessee every year, resulting in nearly 150 fatalities and more than 2,500 injuries. Furthermore, statistics show that roughly 15% of the people killed in TN motorcycle accidents from 1999 to 2008 were either not wearing helmets at the time of the crash, or were not wearing their helmets in what is considered a proper manner. Here at Michael D. Ponce & Associates, our legal team is dedicated to protecting the rights of those injured because of the negligence or recklessness of another person or party. However, our personal injury attorneys fear that reducing helmet requirements in Tennessee will only result in a higher rate of motorcycle accident injuries and deaths statewide.