About a week ago, I posted a story about a kid dying from a head injury caused in a skiing accident in New Mexico.
And then there’s this:
Both cases have a couple things in common, but one in particular stands out: Neither victim was wearing a helmet at the time of the accident.
I’m going to date myself a bit here, but I can remember riding a bike as a kid and never even knowing there was such as thing as a biking helmet. Now it’s standard equipment.
The same revolution is happening on the slopes. In times past, the only thing people were wearing on their heads were ski caps made of wool. No longer.
I admit the first time I ever skied with a helmet was last winter. But as my skills (and speed) increased, I definitely see the need for one. I won’t ski without a helmet anymore.
The same will be true of several other outdoor activities. If I’m biking, I’m wearing a helmet. Doesn’t matter if it’s on the street or off-road. An errant driver can cause a spill, and your cranium won’t match up well with the pavement. Off-road, it’s simply too easy to have a spill and be sent flying into a rock, tree or hard ground.
If I’m rock climbing in the outdoors, I want a helmet. Heck, even if I’m doing some Class 3 or 4 scrambling, I want headgear. Loose rocks from above and falls can cause devastating injuries to an unprotected head.
Skiing, boarding, biking and climbing are fun. Even on bad days, these activities are memorable. God was gracious enough to give us a hard head to protect us from head injuries, but the skull had its limits. If you’re headed to the slopes in the Rockies, climbing in the Wichitas or biking the trails in the metro area, get that headgear. I’d prefer not to see any more of these tragedies in the headlines.
If you can think of a story where a helmet saved you some grief, let me know. Comment here or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.