Deaths from motorcycle crashes on the rise
By: JENNIFER RIGG
"Twenty-two years ago, Tom Nelson wore a helmet
when he rode his motorcycle because his mother
asked him to. Today he wears a helmet because
one saved his life.
While riding in Houston, Nelson, then 24 years
old, said a truck turned left in front of him.
His head struck its side.
“I broke every bone in my face from my eyeballs
down,” the now New Albany resident said. “Thank
God I had that helmet on, which back in the day
cost me $250. If it hadn’t been for the helmet,
I definitely would have been dead.”
Nelson spent six weeks in intensive care
recovering from his injuries. He didn’t get back
on a motorcycle for 20 years.
“I knew they were dangerous,” Nelson said. “But
I would always wear a helmet. I knew it was the
smart thing to do because of the way I rode that
bike. I rode it on the back wheel as much as I
rode it on two wheels.”
According to Indiana State Police records, 2,587
motorcycle accidents occurred in 2005. Of those,
104 ended in fatality. Motorcycle accidents were
involved in only 1.2 percent of all Indiana
vehicle crashes in 2005 but accounted for 11
percent of all fatalities for the year. Only
20.7 percent of all motor vehicle crashes
resulted in injury in 2005 while injuries were
reported in more than 68 percent of all
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