Thursday, June 14, 2007

TN Helmet Bill Still Alive

After hearing teasers on News 12 in Chattanooga that the TN Helmet Repeal Bill, HB1283, was dead, Mark "Yog" Moore sets them straight!

Freedom of Choice BillWDEF News 12, TN - From Harleys to sport bikes - No matter what kind of motorcycle you ride, it's mandatory in the state of Tennessee to wear a helmet.But legislation is trying to change that and you may be surprised at who is helping push it through.Mark Moore has put over a hundred thousand miles on his bike.And he would like to put a hundred more, without what he says is a "constrictive helmet."As part of American Bikers Active Toward Education or ABATE, Moore and others are working to pass legislation that will lift the mandatory helmet law in Tennessee and allow anyone 21 years or older to ride without the head gear."Our position has been with this bill, a freedom of choice - 30 other states allow motorcyclists to ride without a helmet. We don't see why Tennessee can't be one of those," Moore said.You might be surprised to learn Moore is a nurse. And some people might think that his stance on the freedom of choice bill is contradictory to his medical profession. "I would say it's no more contradicting than seeing health professionals that smoke or eat fatty foods and are overweight," Moore responded.And Moore is not alone. He says they have several health professionals in the ABATE organization.In fact, the state representative who was the main sponsor of the bill was a doctor.But decided to hand off the sponsorship after flack from some in the Tennessee medical industry."What they've said in the past is that we will spend more money on riders who were hurt because they were unhelmeted," Moore adds.Moore does agree that helmets can prevent injuries, but not all of the time.Preliminary reports from the Tennessee Department of Safety show 134 motorcycle fatalities in 2006...of those 120 were wearing helmets...14 were not and in one case it's unknown."What we ought to be working on is preventing crashes..not learning how to crash better," Moore said.The bill passed the full transportation committee and now will go to the sub-finance committee, but not until the next legislative session

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