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Bikers' Rights: Concerned Responsible Motorcyclists to Confused Emergency Doctors: Your Crash Survival Focus Obscures Crash Prevention Potentials

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Concerned Responsible Motorcyclists to Confused Emergency Doctors:
Your Crash Survival Focus Obscures Crash Prevention Potentials
Release Number 0084

Motorcycling Endurance Riders
Bikers Rights, Motorcyclists Rights, Long Distance Motorcycle Riding

Extreme Long Distance Endurance Motorcycle Rider IronBoltBruce From: IronBoltBruce [mailto:Bruce@LdrLongDistanceRider.com]
Sent: Tuesday, June 10, 2008 7:33 AM
To: 'jaiken@lsuhsc.edu'; 'pdebli@lsuhsc.edu'; 'jhunt2@lsuhsc.edu'
Cc: 'cslaughter@wwltv.com'
Subject: Concerned Responsible Motorcyclists to Confused Emergency Doctors: Your Crash Survival Focus Obscures Crash Prevention Potentials

James Aiken, MD, MHA
Director of Emergency Preparedness
2021 Lakeshore Drive, Suite 200
New Orleans, LA 70122
Phone: (504) 903-0838
jaiken@lsuhsc.edu

Peter DeBlieux, Executive Director
LSU Health Sciences Center Health Care Services Division
Medical Center of Louisiana at New Orleans
MCLNO Foundation
2000 Tulane Avenue
New Orleans, LA 70112
Tel: 504-568-3712 Fax: 504-568-3460
pdebli@lsuhsc.edu

John P. Hunt, MD, MPH, FACS
Associate Professor
Departments of Surgery and Anesthesiology, Chief
Section of Trauma & Critical Care Surgery, Program Director
General Surgery Residency Program & Critical Care Fellowship
533 Bolivar Street
New Orleans, LA 70112
Phone: (504) 568-4750
Fax: (504) 568-4633
jhunt2@lsuhsc.edu

Gentlemen:

A motorcycle was my exclusive form of transportation long before gas topped four dollars a gallon. And as a 24/7 biker and long distance rider, I use and recommend the use of helmets when riding a motorcycle. In fact, I cannot imagine riding through several hundred miles of adverse weather without one. On the other hand, I fully appreciate the difference between the utility of helmets and the futility of helmet laws...

http://tinyurl.com/2d57zg

... and our roadways would be a safer place if "experts" like you did as well. In the article cited below, I read with great disappointment and disgust your following comments...

1. "One traumatic brain injury could very well be that case that prevents the hospitals in this area and the state from taking care of somebody who again is acting responsible," said Dr. James Aiken, the Director of Emergency Preparedness at the LSUHSC.

2. "... why we would do something so dangerous as to repeal a helmet law ...," said Peter Deblieux, the Director of Emergency Medicine with the LSU Health Sciences Center.

3. "It's been demonstrated again and again, throughout the United States, that when you repeal the helmet law, more motorcyclists die," said Dr. John Hunt, the Assistant Director of the LSU Health Sciences Trauma Center.

...to which I offer the following specifics:

1. Helmeted or not, Dr. Aiken, when a motorcyclist is injured as a result of a right-of-way violation by a negligent, careless, distracted or impaired driver chatting away on their cellphone as their gas-guzzling supersized SUV weaves from lane to lane, it is NOT the motorcyclist who acted irresponsibly. The DRIVER is at fault.

2. You have no grasp of the facts here, Peter Deblieux. In a recent analysis of nationwide traffic accident statistics from 1975 to 2004 published in the November 2007 issue of the American Journal of Public Health, the mean values computed from the 30-year database for "Motorcycle fatalities per 10,000" were as follows:

Universal helmet law: 8.37
Partial helmet law: 7.31
No helmet law: 6.22

http://tinyurl.com/6aqbgb

3. Neither do you, Dr. Hunt. As I just pointed out to your colleague in confusion, nationwide statistics show no consistent positive correlation between mandatory helmet laws and reduced motorcycle injuries.

And here is my full reply to you and all other Haddonistic healers:

PHYSICIAN, HEAL THYSELF...

Neither you nor any other member of the American medical community has any right to pass judgment on whether someone is "acting responsibly" until you first CLEAN UP YOUR OWN ACT:

"Infections contracted in hospitals are the fourth largest killer in America. Every year in this country, two million patients' contract infections in hospitals, and an estimated 103,000 die as a result--as many deaths as from AIDS, breast cancer, and auto accidents combined... Hospital infections add an estimated $30.5 billion to the nation's hospital costs each year."

http://tinyurl.com/36bzok

"Astoundingly, over half the time physicians and other caregivers break the most fundamental rule of hygiene by failing to clean their hands before treating patients."

http://tinyurl.com/2wk2qx

"The dirty truth about docs who don't wash... Doctors, nurses and other hospital staffer too busy, too distracted--or, sometimes, too arrogant--to wash up are the target of a growing movement aimed at cutting rates of hospital-acquired infections that kill nearly 100,000 people in the U.S. each year, according to federal estimates."

http://tinyurl.com/2dbtqq

...AND LEAVE MOTORCYCLISTS ALONE!

Every time one of you myopic medicos assures the public that mandatory helmet laws are the cure-all for motorcycle safety, you increase the risk of injury or death for millions of responsible motorcyclists by reinforcing the failed public policy focus on "crash survival" rather than "crash prevention". Your medicine isn't saving lives. Instead, like the media who publish your perverse prescriptions, it's taking them:

http://tinyurl.com/5wk9f3

Speaking strictly for myself and no other individuals or organizations,

IronBoltBruce

Bruce@LdrLongDistanceRider.com
Author and Publisher, LdrLongDistanceRider.com
Co-Moderator, Bruce-n-Ray's Biker Forum
Mile Eater Gold Member, Iron Butt Association
Sustaining Member, Motorcycle Riders Foundation
2007 Chairman's Circle, American Motorcyclist Association

***

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***

http://tinyurl.com/57c3oy

Emergency doctors concerned about possible motorcycle helmet law change
11:25 PM CDT on Monday, June 9, 2008
WWLTV.com

Louisiana's back and forth motorcycle helmet law could be heading for another change.
WWL-TV

A law in the La. Legislature could kill helmet laws.

Currently anyone who rides on or operates a motorcycle is required to wear a helmet, a change from the previous law that allowed anyone over 18 and who carried a minimum amount of insurance to go without a helmet if they chose.

Now, the law could be changing again to allow older riders the right to ride without a helmet. It has passed the House and is awaiting consideration by a Senate committee. Many emergency medical surgeons say they are dead set against it.

"It's been demonstrated again and again, throughout the United States, that when you repeal the helmet law, more motorcyclists die," said Dr. John Hunt, the Assistant Director of the LSU Health Sciences Trauma Center.

Doctors like Hunt say the scientific data is clear -- deaths double, brain injuries triple, and more tax dollars are spent on long term care when motorcyclists aren't required to wear helmets. Doctors also say laws to protect those under 18 donít help much as most injuries happen to adults.

"The American College of Surgeons, the American College of Emergency Physicians, the American Association of Emergency Medical Physicians, they all are very interested in why we would do something so dangerous as to repeal a helmet law particularly since the state has done this once before," said Peter Deblieux, the Director of Emergency Medicine with the LSU Health Sciences Center.

In addition, emergency doctors say the cityís health care system is still lagging after Katrina and doesn't need more debilitating injuries.

"One traumatic brain injury could very well be that case that prevents the hospitals in this area and the state from taking care of somebody who again is acting responsible," said Dr. James Aiken, the Director of Emergency Preparedness at the LSUHSC.

###

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