The CDC's Helmet Propaganda


Motorcycle Riders Foundation 236 Massachusetts Ave. NE | Suite 204 | Washington, DC 20002-4980 202-546-0983 (voice) | 202-546-0986 (fax) |

12NR23 - MRF News Release - The CDC and Propaganda

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 25 June 2012 Contact: Jeff Hennie, Vice President of Government Relations and Public Affairs

The CDC and Propaganda Recently the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) presented a study on motorcycle safety. Specifically the CDC National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Division of Unintentional Injury Prevention.

The study is nothing new, in fact it is a collection of conclusions drawn from past studies and old statistics, some of the CDC's conclusions even seem to be drawn from thin air.

CDC uses the same tired worn out examples we have seen again and again. They cite the Florida study that said fatalities increased 63.4% from 2000-2009. Which is true, but like every other instance of using this statistic they fail to mention that motorcycle registrations increased over 100% during the same time frame.

The study goes on to uses imaginary numbers to back up their position that motorcycle helmets save money. They claim that in 2008, the United States saved $3 billion because of helmet use and then claim that the US could have saved an additional $1.8 billion if mandatory helmet laws were on the books. They provide absolutely zero evidence of this supposed financial burden.

The CDC makes no mention of rider education. We know rider education to be the best way to prevent crashes. Take New Hampshire for example, according to Robert LeTourneau, New Hampshire State Official Motorcycle Education Specialist, they have had 15 fatal motorcycle accidents of riders who took the class since 1990. Thats out of over 44,000 students trained in the same time period and .034% of fatal motorcycle accidents. All with no mandatory helmet law.

Of course, the CDC uses NHTSA's 1997 base year for motorcycle fatalities, which was also the lowest point of motorcycle fatalities over the past 30 years. In 1997, there were 2,116 fatalities for 3,826,000 motorcycles registered. Or 0.055% of the motorcyclists were killed.In 2010, there were 4,502 fatalities for 8,368,000 motorcycles registered. Or 0.053% of the motorcyclists were killed.

So we have more than doubled the motorcycle population and we have actually reduced fatalities.

The study also contends that states without helmet laws have higher insurance costs. According to, that's not true. Out of the top five most expensive states to buy insurance, only one allows for helmet free riding.

The supposed findings of this study are likely to show up in your local media. Do not let them get away with this.

The MRF encourages you to continue to use the “Fact or Fiction” pieces published by the MRF to combat the junk science in this study and all future attacks on our freedom. You can find the Fact or Fiction pieces HERE.

Read the CDC study HERE.

The MRF is working with Federal legislators on this report and to help redirect the priorities of the CDC on actual disease issues, not transportation. To keep things in perspective, let me remind you that the CDC is the same organization that uses the idea of a zombie apocalypse as a way of scaring people into preparing for disaster. Seriously, read it here: