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London, Ontario is full of beautiful bike paths, and with those paths come a large group of biking-enthusiast. Whether you bike for recreation or cycle as a way to get from point A to point B, a properly fitted, safety approved helmet can help you avoid serious injury or even death. In fact, according to the Bicycle Helmet Association, a helmet could prevent 85% of biking-related head injuries.

The Law in Canada

As a piece of protective equipment that can – and has – saved lives, it’s no wonder that eight out of 10 provinces in Canada have helmet laws in place. Of the eight provinces with helmet laws, only five require adults to wear helmets while riding. In Ontario, adults over the age of 18 are not required by law to wear a helmet, but it’s important to remember that regardless of age or skill level, serious injuries can occur. When it comes to your health and wellbeing, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Cyclist-related Injuries

Cycling-related accidents happen much more frequently than you might think. Whether loosing control and falling off of your bike, or being struck by a motor vehicle, all accidents can result in serious injury.

In a cyclist-motorist collision, cyclists are extremely vulnerable to serious injuries such as head injuries and brain trauma. In the case that life-threatening injuries are not sustained, many cyclists involved in a collision with a motor vehicle sustain minor injuries such as broken bones, fractures, minor concussions and bruises. While not all injuries can be completely avoided in a collision, the best way to prevent against both minor and serious head injury is to wear a helmet at all times while biking.

Finding the Right Fit

Unfortunately, helmets are not one-size-fits-all. It’s important to find a properly fitting and safety certified helmet in order to be fully protected. When finding a properly fitting helmet for you, follow these tips:

  • Ensure helmet fits snug over head
  • Ensure front of helmet sits two finger-widths above eyebrows
  • Ensure one finger-width of space between the chin and chinstrap
  • When helmet is placed on head, move head from side to side, and back and forth to ensure it is perfectly snug.

Injured in a Cycling Collision: What now?

In recent years, there have been rules put into place to protect cyclists. In Ontario, anyone under the age of 18 must wear a helmet and it is widely recommended that those over the age of 18 wear helmets when riding as well. Additionally, in September 2015, two major changes were made to the law to protect cyclists on the roads. These changes included rules on sharing the road and ‘dooring.’

While helmets can prevent 85% of bike-related head injuries, not all injuries can be avoided. If you become injured in a biking-related accident where another individual is at fault, you may be entitled to compensation. To understand your legal options when it comes to cycling-related injuries, contact our team of experienced lawyers today.

A word from our clients

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"My wife was involved in a very serious motor vehicle collision several years ago, and luckily she survived, but unfortunately she suffered some injuries."
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January 8, 2016

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HARRISON PENSA â„¢ is a full-service law firm representing private & business interests throughout southwestern Ontario.

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