The Motorcycle Airbag Jacket/Vest—Does It Really Work?

Will an Airbag Jacket/Vest Actually Protect You from Injury?

The Motorcycle Airbag Jacket/Vest—Does It Really Work?It may surprise you to learn that the first patent application for a motorcycle airbag vest/jacket was filed in Europe in 1976. The concept is pretty straightforward—the airbag is contained in a vest or jacket that you put on over your other riding clothes. At the most basic level, the jacket/vest has a lanyard or cable that is tethered to your bike. If you fall off, the lanyard pulls a pin, which punctures a CO2 tube and inflates the jacket/vest, typically in less than 1/4 of a second. On the other end of the spectrum, there are airbag jackets that don’t need to be attached to the bike, but which have built in sensors to detect an accident.

Do Airbag Vest/Jackets Actually Minimize the Risk of Injury?

A number of studies have shown significant promise for the motorcycle vest/jacket airbag systems:

  • Car and Bike conducted a two-year study of one of the basic models that attaches to the bike with a lanyard. They reported no incidents of accidental deployment. They also had a rider who lost control of his bike on a wet road. The vest immediately deployed, and the rider walked away without as much as a bruise. He was even able to reuse the jacket.
  • Honda ran tests that found the airbag reduced forward momentum by more than 60%, which reduced head trauma by more than 80%. Honda concluded that the airbag systems wouldn’t make it completely safe to ride a motorcycle, but could mean the difference between minor injuries and a serious, catastrophic or even fatal accident.

Contact Weber & Nierenberg for Experienced Legal Representation

At Weber & Nierenberg, we have spent decades fighting for the rights of injured people in California, including people hurt in motorcycle accidents. We understand that every case is unique, and we will take the time to learn what happened to you, so we can take the right steps to get the outcome you want. Contact us by e-mail or call our office at 1-866-288-6010 for a free initial consultation.

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