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Thread: Don't get caught !

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  1. #1
    Registered User RTRandy's Avatar
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    Don't get caught !

    On my first night in Tennessee back in 2006 in the town of Savannah to be exact, I decided to ride the one mile trek from my motel to the local convenience store helmetless.

    No lectures please. Yes I subscribe to the ATGETT school of riding, however after riding over 9 hours from Dallas that day and all cleaned up on a balmy summer evening I was intending to grab something to eat and make an exception to get up there and back.

    When I pulled into the parking lot of the convenience store, a driver rolled down his window to tell me it's against the law in Tennessee to ride without a helmet. No sooner a squad car on the street puts on all the flashing lights and slowly heads toward me silently with no siren. Two cops get out and look me over as well as the bike. Conversation starts out with things like "Where you from?" I explain my helmet is in my motel room and promise to ride on home and never ride in Tennessee helmetless again. They tell me the problem is if anything should happen to me at that point, they could be held liable for making the exception. I then say I can just walk back down the road and bring it back. Not sure if maybe they didn't believe me or liked my charming personality , but the two patrolmen looked at each other and then said" How bout we give you a ride to get it?" I say sure and no sooner I'm put in the back seat of a squad car separated from the front seat by a mesh screen and no way to roll down the windows.

    They take me right to my motel door and I grab my Shoei for the ride back to my bike. We talk along the way back with them asking how the heck does someone ride a motorcycle to Nove Scotia. They have to open the rear door from the outside to let me out and with that, they wish me good luck. I apologize again and thank them as well.

    I have no idea how many states require a helmet, though Texas is not one of them.
    Tennessee definitely is, so if you're thinking of just riding across the street to get gas in the morning before loading up the bike and dressing out, think again.
    Last edited by RTRandy; 06-24-2009 at 05:32 AM.
    Luck favors those who are prepared.

  2. #2
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    Don't care...

    Hmmmm....sounds like the start of a Pro / Con helmet discussion.

    Here in Wisconsin it's optional it wear a helmet and the mere mention of a helmet law gets people going.

    Well I don't care whether someone wears a helmet or not. I've personally seen that a helmet can save a head but if someone doesn't give a crap about their head it doesn't effect me.

    If you told me "Hey, I'm going to hit my hand with a hammer repeatedly until it's a bloody mess." I would say "Knock yourself out."
    "During Prohibition I survived on nothing but food and water." - W.C. Fields

  3. #3
    It is what it is. Bud's Avatar
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    Thanks for the "heads up".
    Ride Well, Ride Often, Ride to

    Charter Member "High Town" crew.

  4. #4
    Registered User greenwald's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Since I wear my helmet all the time, I can dispense with knowing which states require and which do not.

    But for those of you who go with 'the ebb and flow' of varying legalities when it comes to enclosing your brain in something more than a do-rag, here is a helpful site with some interesting tidbits of statutory obligations:


    http://www.amadirectlink.com/legisltn/laws.asp


    Ride Safe and ATGATT.
    Kevin Greenwald - Touring Tips Editor
    Nationally Certified Law Enforcement Motor Officer (Ret.)
    MSF RiderCoach # 121656 (BRC,SBRC,IS,IME,SMARTrainer,THE REF Staff)
    Iron Butt Association Member # 34281

  5. #5
    Manfred
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    Sounds like you ran into some cops with brains and the ability to think and apply it their job. That's a wonderful thing!

  6. #6
    Cage Rattler wezul's Avatar
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    I was out of my home state last week and we were heading into town for breakfast, about 2 miles.
    I went sans helmet. OK, guilty, so what, one corner off my Tote 'n' Chip?
    Anyway the point is I just jumped on the bike and I didn't even think about the laws in that state until someone said, "helmet law in this state?".
    Thank you.

  7. #7
    buckeyeclark
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    Okay I am not trying to get a rise out of anyone I just want to state my opinion on this whole helmet thing. A week or so ago I was in the garage working and ran out of something so I jumped in the truck to go 2 blocks to the local auto parts store. When I left the store I got pulled over and ended up getting a seat belt violation which costs me $101 here in the Buckeye state. My point of aggravation is not the ticket, although it did irk me that I didn't think to put the damn belt on. It is the fact that here in Ohio you can put on a pair of flip-flops and 1970's gym shorts with no shirt and ride a motorcycle all over the state; however, step into a car or truck , even if you are dressed like a Nascar driver complete with helmet, and drive 2 feet without your seatbelt you can be fined $101

  8. #8
    Roadster Rider sjbmw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manfred View Post
    Sounds like you ran into some cops with brains and the ability to think and apply it their job. That's a wonderful thing!
    +1

    Let's hear it for the good guys.

    fwiw, when PA changed their law several years ago, I had to try it. Once.

    Riding without a helmet is the most aggravating thing ever. Every microscopic piece of road sand is a laser guided face missile. How people put up with that constant bombardment of facial road shrapnel is amazing.
    Sig? What's a Sig?

  9. #9
    Mountain King JAMESDUNN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sjbmw View Post
    +1

    Let's hear it for the good guys.

    fwiw, when PA changed their law several years ago, I had to try it. Once.

    Riding without a helmet is the most aggravating thing ever. Every microscopic piece of road sand is a laser guided face missile. How people put up with that constant bombardment of facial road shrapnel is amazing.
    Not to mention hard shelled bugs and bumble bees. Ouch!
    1994 R1100RSL, '78 R100RS

    "Ride hard or stay home."

  10. #10
    Old man in the mountains osbornk's Avatar
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    I don't care whether there are helmet laws or not until it impacts me. But it does impact every one of us in our insurance rates. Insurance rates are based in a large part on loss costs. Increased head injuries and larger damage awards due to motorcycle accidents impacts your motorcycle and auto rates. Even if the accidents are not the fault of the motorcycle rider, the rates of auto insurance companies paying damages and the uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage rise.

    My insurance rates in Virginia are cheap and I think it is in part because of our helmet laws. I have full coverage with high limits on my 86 AND 03 motorcycles for $200 per year. I also have full coverage on my 08 car, 04 Pick-up, 01 SUV and 04 travel trailer for $720 per year. I do live in a low risk area, good credit, no tickets or claims of any kind.
    'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.

  11. #11
    Registered User ekoegel's Avatar
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    Angry always got my bucket on

    As a paramedic who does lots of 911 work I won't ride without my bucket on. I have been the guy that uses the dew rag to put the brain back into so it can be buried with the body

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