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Full-Face Helmets: Safe? - Page 3

Poll Results: Would you buy one of these helmets?

This is a multiple choice poll
  • 15% of voters (4)
    Yes
  • 65% of voters (17)
    No
  • 19% of voters (5)
    It depends on the situation
26 Total Votes  
post #61 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by crgildart View Post
 

Difficult to visualize how that could happen as long as the face shield is down.

 

a) if the helmet has a face shield, then that argument *also* applies to skiing with a face-shield equipped helmet.

 

b) moto helmets with goggle openings are common amongst snowmobilers

post #62 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by cantunamunch View Post
 

 

Then shouldn't we be seeing injuries like that among snowmobilers?   Enough to make good statistics?  


We generally don't fall off of two wheels :D.

 

The only time I really seriously rolled a snowmobile was doing brake 360's at about 50mph and Jack Daniels was involved.  Still feel the after effects from that one now and then.

 

Again youth, stupidity and alcohol :nono:.

post #63 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by mallthus View Post
 

 

I will say this (and only this). I've had one motorcycle wreck, where I went down at 55 MPH after being cut off by an SUV. My helmet was unscathed, save for one giant scrape...right up the middle of the faceplate.

 

I tend not to ski at 55 MPH though...

Lucky that's all that happened.  Glad nothing worse happened.

post #64 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldschoolskier View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cantunamunch View Post
 

 

Then shouldn't we be seeing injuries like that among snowmobilers?   Enough to make good statistics?  


We generally don't fall off of two wheels :D.


Yes.   Thank you for emphasising my point.

 

  If the injury mechanism works as described in this thread,   we should see a neck injury incidence spike among helmet-wearing snowmobilers relative to skiers and motorcyclists both.

And do we?   That's a serious question, not a snarky one.

post #65 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by cantunamunch View Post
 


Yes.   Thank you for emphasising my point.

 

  If the injury mechanism works as described in this thread,   we should see a neck injury incidence spike among helmet-wearing snowmobilers relative to skiers and motorcyclists both.

And do we?   That's a serious question, not a snarky one.

 

 

I'll try a guess:

 

Street bikes, Full Face more protection than risk, considering the higher speeds and harder surfaces involved.

 

Dirt bikes, Full Face required for injury prevention but risk to neck injury hence

 

Snowmobiles, Full Face for warmth and protection, risk depends on riding, trail don't think so, mountain to stunt riding likely those guys are wearing neck braces see pic above and

 

 

Skiers, unless required to keep a pole or branch from you face, I suspect we fall into the dirt bike type style if wearing  a full face helmet.  While having you face chewed on by snow and ice may hurt, it beats having your neck snapped when your helmet (chin) stops as it digs in and your body doesn't.

 

Questions really comes down to are you willing to wear a neck brace when wearing a full face helmet?

 

As equipment for protection gets better, we the human interface start to pushes the limits to find new ways to hurt ourselves

post #66 of 69
Just because this has been brought up multiple times in this thread… I am not 100% on this but I sure as hell don't think they wear the neck braces in motocross races/freestyle
because of the helmets. 
 
That's my .02
post #67 of 69

Just as a data point in this funfest, I rode 750 to liter class motorcycles for 35 years, on pavement or graded roads, not true soft dirt. Can tell you for god's truth that nothing digs in when you hit pavement; bad model for full face ski helmets. If you're lucky when  you hit, you skid and slide, leave your some of your leather - or skin - along the way. If you're unlucky, you tumble and bust up something, or if you're really unlucky, you just stay airborne until you hit a very solid object like a tree, lamp post, or a car grill. And the grand prize is a guardrail, which tends to remove limbs or heads. Not a lot of soft surfaces along the way to test our hypothesis. 

 

Suspect a dirt bike, on soft dirt, would be a better model for snow. (And they routinely race dirt bikes in snow, with studded tires.) Cannot speak to snowmobiles. 

 

Will also note that Sarah Burke died not because she landed on her head, but because her neck flexion was so extreme she tore a high vertebral artery. I believe there have been some dirtbike deaths from similar causes; Jeremy Lusk comes to mind. And I believe I've read articles that both sports have considered neck braces to prevent that specific injury. In fact, big controversy in yoga right now over cumulative damage to arterial plexus, basilar artery, at base of brain that's stretched when/if you do Cobra position involving standing on your neck, face looking up, body vertical, so neck at a right angle to skull. 

 

Point being that you can exit this earth because your upper spinal cord blood supply starts leaking from stretching or shearing even if your skull and face are nicely protected. And anything that puts more stress on the neck, including a heavier helmet or a helmet that can suddenly decelerate your head, seems from the basic biophysics of it to be a bad idea. 

post #68 of 69

I was under the impression that a neck brace restraint might have prevented the death of Dale Earnhardt.  Not because of a helmet digging, but because of the g-forces of the crash amplified by the weight of the full face helmet with no neck support to prevent his head from smashing in to the steering wheel. I think the whiplash associated with the extra weight on the head is in fact at least one  reason why freestyle snowX and MX riders wear neck braces now.

post #69 of 69

Here ya go on Ernhardt (COD most of the way down the page): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_of_Dale_Earnhardt

 

Car and Driver on the HANS and Ernhardt (who died of a basilar fracture, despite all his other injuries, seat belt mods didn't help): http://www.caranddriver.com/features/the-physics-of-how-the-hans-device-saves-lives-feature

 

And the HANS device's history: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HANS_device

 

The C&D illustration pretty clearly shows why sudden flexion at the neck, whether from rolling forward over our fixed skull, or having our heads snap forward with the body fixed, is not a great way to stay alive. Didn't realize F-1 also required it.

 

Worth pointing out that a NASCAR crash will have far greater G's, obviously, but reduced angle of flexion, while a low speed roll on our necks, or for that matter, a Cobra stance, will have far fewer G's (or none), but larger angle of flexion. Skiing tumble will also tend to have rotary forces along with flexion. So IMO, in skiing accident, very low prob of actual basilar fracture (bottom of skull being broken off in a pulling motion), but non-trivial prob of soft tissue damage, eg, basilar artery shear, vertebral artery lesion that will progressively enlarge. Could even be issues of cumulative damage on microscopic scale, much like concussions, rather than sudden death from a massive bleed. Doubt there's enough data to find out. (And not convinced these risks would be eliminated by no face guards, just reduced. Nature didn't design us to use our heads like pogo sticks.)


Edited by beyond - 9/25/14 at 9:27am
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