144 died of head injuries in 20 months

Some 144 motorcycle drivers or riders died of head injuries from January 2017 to August 2018 in 165 accidents as recorded by the Negros Oriental Police Provincial Office.

Based on NOPPO report, of the 106 fatalities in 2017, 92 died of head/brain injuries while 52 of the 59 deaths from January-August 2018 were due to the same cause. Twelve died of blood loss, while 15 were caused by other injuries.

Only 31 of the 144 fatalities from motorcycle accidents wore helmets, 19 of those who died were on board four-wheeled vehicles. However, 27 of those dead are not even riding any vehicle or were just plain passersby.

The Land Transportation Office in Dumaguete City is using these figures to boost its argument in favor of the use of helmets by motorcycle riders amid passionate objections from the majority of the local population.

Some of the mayors and provincial officials are reportedly opposed to the mandatory use of helmets being impractical and anti-poor as many of motorcycle owners across the province could barely afford to buy a helmet or pay the fine from P 1,500 to P 10,000.

Still other argue that the use of helmets should be optional to drivers and riders of motorcycles for it is primarily a question of personal safety and protection.

Nevertheless, the LTO and the Provincial Highway Patrol Group will continue to implement the law particularly in the national highway across Negros Oriental.