Bill to dump helmet laws moves to Finance Committee

Bill to dump helmet laws moves to Finance Committee (Image 1)

A proposal that would loosen motorcycle helmet laws in the state of Tennessee is pushing through the legislature.

The bill was passed in a Senate Transportation Committee last week and goes to the Finance Committee next Wednesday.

The bill would require riders without helmets to have additional medical coverage, a minimum two year motorcycle license, have completed a riding course and purchase a $50 sticker for display.

Many motorcycle riders support the idea.

“I come from a state that didn't require helmets,” said Scott Neer, sales manager at Boswell's Harley-Davidson in Nashville. “I've been riding 15 years. I believe it's a choice.”

But opponents say doing away with helmet laws would increase traumatic brain injuries and deaths on Tennessee roadways.

Ross Cochran crashed his motorcycle in May of last year. He says without a doubt his helmet saved his life.

“You can get brain damage by tripping and falling at 5 mph,” said Cochran. “I'm on a vehicle that pushes 90 miles-per-hour. Why wouldn't I want to give myself the absolute best chance, just in case?”   

The bill is set to go to the Finance Committee Wednesday.

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