Call today for a Free Consultation 321-253-4200

I am a big advocate of wearing all of the safety gear that you can under reasonable conditions. This includes a top quality DOT (Department of Transportation) certified and preferably, Snell certified helmet. In my work as a personal injury attorney, I have too often seen the results of a crash where the rider was not wearing a brain box.

As a rider myself, I also see the truth behind the argument that without a helmet you have much better situational awareness. You really can’t argue the point that your vision and hearing are much less impaired when you ride bare-headed. Given all the pluses and minuses, though, I still vote for a helmet but recognize it is a matter of personal choice. This brings us to the meat of this article.

GoPros and Helmet Cams

There is no doubt that cameras touch the narcissist that lives within all of us. If you don’t believe it, just browse the web a few minutes and you will find videos of people demonstrating their abilities to do everything from the mundane to the asinine.

There is a more serious side of this trend, though that has had much greater impact on all of us as riders and myself, as a lawyer, in particular. There is no doubt that there has long been a certain amount of animosity between the general public, law enforcement, and the biker community.

For the most part, I feel that it is mainly a case of a few bad apples, on both sides, causing gross misconceptions. Still, given how some riders act, it is no wonder that things haven’t improved very much over time. Even as more people take to the road, on two rather than four wheels, bikers still get a bad rap and are often targeted as the bad guys.

This is where the video revolution has really been a boom for motorcyclists having to deal with the law. The use of cameras, whether Gopros or helmet cams, are some of the best tools that have come along for combating the prejudice that the law and the public at large, holds against my clients.

It used to be that a biker pulled over by John Law, was guilty, period and that when I had to take a personal injury case to court, both I and my clients knew we were going in with two strikes against us, just because they rode a motorcycle.

Video has changed a lot of that, when you can show a judge or jury exactly what happened and that you were riding in a responsible manner when side swiped, bullied over or pulled out in front of, it is hard for the defending insurance company to dispute your claim.

Better still is the fact that, as video technology has progressed, it may now help prevent many of the accidents that motorcyclist become involved in.

Smart Helmets

There are several companies, like Bell and Skully, who have come on the scene lately with what have commonly become called smart helmets. These are helmets that through the use of cameras and HUDs (Heads Up Displays) allow a rider to greatly increase their view of the world. Depending on the make and model a rider may now be able to not only see the 105-degrees mandated by the DOT but have a full 360-degree view of the world around them.

While I must admit some misgivings about some of these systems, causing information overload or being a distraction for the rider, I applaud the efforts overall and support any trend that increases a rider’s ability to know what is happening around them.