December 30, 2011 /24-7PressRelease/
-- Families traveling to New Jersey this winter for ski trips will be subject to a new law that requires all children under the age of 18 to wear helmets while on the slopes. According to a report by USA Today, a Consumer Products Safety Commission study found that helmet use could prevent more than 7,000 head injuries per year, particularly among children.
Dr. Joseph Rempson, co-director of the Concussion Center at New Jersey's Overlook Medical Center explained, "knowing that the risk for youngsters through the age of 18 is greater than adults, anything you can do to prevent injury is a positive thing." The story of pro snowboarder Kevin Pearce underscores this point. An Olympic hopeful, Pearce suffered a traumatic brain injury two years ago after hitting his head on the lip of a halfpipe during a training session. Doctors believe that he would have died if not for the helmet he wore.
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports that falls are the leading cause of head injuries, particularly concussions. Since kids are more susceptible to head injuries due to reckless behavior, helmet use while skiing follows the same safety rationale as helmet rules for skateboarders and bicyclists.
Singed into law by governor Chris Christie in April, New Jersey is the first state in the U.S. to implement such a law. The average cost of ski helmets is $55, and most ski resorts will rent helmets for $10. Parents of juveniles not wearing helmets will be fined $25 for the first violation, and $100 for any subsequent violations. However, resorts may make additional helmets available in order to attract customers and to comply with the law.
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