The Nov. 28 article on motorcycle injuries/deaths costing us $16 billion in 2010 fails to also mention that auto accident injuries/deaths in 2010 cost us $99 billion (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).
The article further reports that 82,000 motorcyclists were injured and 4,502 killed nationwide in 2010 but fails to mention that auto accidents in 2010 injured 2,243,000 and killed 32,885 nationwide (U.S. Department of Transportation).
The report referred to in the article reports that "alcohol impairment; speeding; lack of a license, training, or riding skills; and lack of motorist awareness of motorcycles" were the main factors in the motorcycle injury/fatality statistics. Safety helmet use is a minor factor in reducing injury/preventing fatalities.
As a racer at the local track, I am required to wear a safety helmet when racing. NASCAR, NHRA and all other auto racing venues require safety helmets for the drivers. If we are to advance a safety helmet program in this country, or just in Hawaii, it needs to be for all drivers. Just ask the emergency room doctors at Maui Memorial Medical Center where most of the vehicle accident head injuries come from - auto accidents.
If people driving or riding in cars are unwilling to put on a safety helmet every time you get into your car, stop trying to force it on the motorcycle riders. What we need is better riding skills/training for the motorcycle riders and better awareness of motorcycles on the road by auto drivers.