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Thailand isn’t exactly known for its safe roads. In fact, the country has some of the most dangerous roads in which to traverse, especially if you take them on by motorbike. Compared to Europe and other Western countries, traffic situations and accidents are not dealt with in the same way. But, as it is quite hard to get an auto loan as an expat, many choose to rent or buy motorbikes to get around the country. Wearing a helmet is, of course, highly recommended, and it is illegal to not wear one in Thailand. However, despite the laws, many still […]

The story Thailand’s safest motorbike helmets and where to get them as seen on Thaiger News.

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I have always ridden with high quality helmets - but in Thailand full faced helmets are just too hot unless you are on an open road going fast.  A quality half face helmet is the way to go for most short journeys in Thailand - most falls off a bike in Thailand do not involve face first hits - it is back and side of the head.  However, if you are riding at speed 100K+ on the open roads then a full face is the only way to go - far far safer for if an accident happens - fall off just once at speed and you will know exactly what I mean (if you are still here afterwards). 

PS - 80% of the death injuries in Thailand are to the head - no helmets or those cheap plastic crap.  They can fix a broken bone almost anywhere, but they cannot fix a broken head - even just a cracked one can be death. 

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A very well researched and written article by Ann Carter.

I always wear a full face helmet even if I am only going to the Seven Eleven a couple of kilometres away.

I would have liked to see mention of the different types of helmet strap fasteners.  I only use helmets with double D type fasteners as I believe they are the simplest and best.  I have seen helmets manufactured here that are really quite poor in this area.  I remember one helmet I looked at where the fastener had unfinished sharp metal edges.  Not really what you want next to your throat as you bounce down the road.

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16 minutes ago, AussieBob said:

I have always ridden with high quality helmets - but in Thailand full faced helmets are just too hot unless you are on an open road going fast.  A quality half face helmet is the way to go for most short journeys in Thailand - most falls off a bike in Thailand do not involve face first hits - it is back and side of the head.  However, if you are riding at speed 100K+ on the open roads then a full face is the only way to go - far far safer for if an accident happens - fall off just once at speed and you will know exactly what I mean (if you are still here afterwards). 

PS - 80% of the death injuries in Thailand are to the head - no helmets or those cheap plastic crap.  They can fix a broken bone almost anywhere, but they cannot fix a broken head - even just a cracked one can be death. 

In the US I always wore a full face, even for a short distance. Over here in Thailand it can indeed get very hot in the direct tropical sun and I agree that the 3/4 style open face is a reasonable option that does offer some, if minimal, protection to the face perhaps on the first hit for scrapes and such. 

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That is a photo of my old helmet taken in 2016.

That was about a 40 kph crash.

With an open face helmet that crash would have resulted in nasty facial injuries.  Wearing this helmet I walked away totally uninjured.

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1 hour ago, Changnam43 said:

That is a photo of my old helmet taken in 2016.

That was about a 40 kph crash.

With an open face helmet that crash would have resulted in nasty facial injuries.  Wearing this helmet I walked away totally uninjured.

Almost the first thing I was told about motorbike riding is that if you haven't yet come off, then its only a  matter of time before you do. Not wearing a decent helmet is pure madness, or misplaced macho ism 

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3 minutes ago, gazmo16 said:

probably even less popular even than helmets in Thailand would be gloves of any sort. Try coming off your bike and not putting your hands down. 

Yes, absolutely. it makes me shiver to see kids charging along on their skinny tyre bikes, at ludicrous speeds, wearing nothing but shorts, T shirts and flip flops. Their injuries at even Low speeds would be life changing if not life ending. Farangs of course should know better, but many don't seem to, maybe they think that they are bullet proof due to their foreign passport. 

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On 11/12/2021 at 12:47 PM, Changnam43 said:

That is a photo of my old helmet taken in 2016.

That was about a 40 kph crash.

With an open face helmet that crash would have resulted in nasty facial injuries.  Wearing this helmet I walked away totally uninjured.

I could ask how it happened, because it is rare that for some reason at 40ks you could not turn head before face planting, but maybe it was age? 

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7 hours ago, gazmo16 said:

probably even less popular even than helmets in Thailand would be gloves of any sort. Try coming off your bike and not putting your hands down. 

Very true - there are 'mesh' type MX gloves that are Ok - and maybe also their elbow guards (they often hit hard). But the other thing is that the Thais will wear thongs (flip flops) or even nothing on their feet - madness.  

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30 minutes ago, AussieBob said:

I could ask how it happened, because it is rare that for some reason at 40ks you could not turn head before face planting, but maybe it was age? 

It was raining heavily and a truck coming towards me decided to overtake which forced me to the nearside of the road.  I thought it was not a big problem.  It just meant that I would be running through puddles but concealed within one of them was a pothole about 6 to 8 inches deep.  I went over the handlebars and landed face first.

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1 hour ago, Changnam43 said:

It was raining heavily and a truck coming towards me decided to overtake which forced me to the nearside of the road.  I thought it was not a big problem.  It just meant that I would be running through puddles but concealed within one of them was a pothole about 6 to 8 inches deep.  I went over the handlebars and landed face first.

Bugger - got to avoid puddles in Thailand - even in a car. Glad you came out of it OK.  Reminds me why I decided not to ride in Thailand anymore. 

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I simply do not trust Thai helmets.  I buy a good quality open face helmet in the UK with a BSI/ACU kite mark on it, and bring it over with me...What I also do is replace my helmet every 2 years, Why?.. Because the 1st thing I do when I leave my bike is put the helmet on my mirror..So over 2 years how many hours has it been left in the hot,baking sun..?  The helmet looks as new, but the sheer heat it has been subjected to just may have weakened it..?

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30 minutes ago, AussieBob said:

Bugger - got to avoid puddles in Thailand - even in a car. Glad you came out of it OK.  Reminds me why I decided not to ride in Thailand anymore. 

Anyone who rides a motorcycle in Thailand will be familiar with the scenario I described where a car or truck overtakes fully aware that it will force you to the side of the road or even off the road entirely.  You just have to suck it up here.

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25 minutes ago, Tanuki said:

I simply do not trust Thai helmets.  I buy a good quality open face helmet in the UK with a BSI/ACU kite mark on it, and bring it over with me...What I also do is replace my helmet every 2 years, Why?.. Because the 1st thing I do when I leave my bike is put the helmet on my mirror..So over 2 years how many hours has it been left in the hot,baking sun..?  The helmet looks as new, but the sheer heat it has been subjected to just may have weakened it..?

Shark helmets are made in Thailand and they are fine.  Sold in Europe and the States and used by Moto GP and WSBK riders.  Not cheap by Thai standards.  Anything up to 20K.

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7 minutes ago, Changnam43 said:

Shark helmets are made in Thailand and they are fine.  Sold in Europe and the States and used by Moto GP and WSBK riders.  Not cheap by Thai standards.  Anything up to 20K.

Yep - my Thai niece was hit by a falling tree branch that an idiot cut off while she was riding under it. The plastic 'hat' did just enough to stop it killing her, but after medical treatment (all good - hard head) and weeks of headaches she suddenly realised the value of a 'real' helmet. Wife and I took her to a big bike dealer in the nearest city and bought her a Shark helmet. 

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I can’t buy a replacement head so I always buy a brand name full face helmet. I buy Aria even though they are slightly heavier than other brands because I think they fit my head shape better or maybe they just feel better balanced on my head. Don’t buy based on appearance! Try a fair few helmets on and wobble your head around and up and down. And helmet inner linings are like new leather shoes. You wear them in. Brand new and a bit too snug, especially on your cheek bones, will become snug after repeated use. Snug is good. Adjust the chin strap and check you can easily clip and unclip the strap. Might take some practice. It’s easy to fall out of the habit of securing your helmet to your head because the clip is a PITA. And buy a clear AND a tinted visor. That’s my experience with helmets anyway. Or wear a cheap open face and hope you never get gravel rash on your face. Up to you. 

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I go with the modular type helmet for long rides. It offers more protection than a half helmet or a 3/4 helmet but the front can be flipped up to allow for cooling when stopped or riding slowly. I like the Bilmola Explorer models...around $100 US. Otherwise I have a LS2 Rebellion half helmet that I brought from the US.

Agree with Fanta, most people buy a helmet too big for their head. When you put on a new helmet, it should be very snug to the point that you feel a LITTLE uncomfortableness because of tightness. It will loosen up over time....as Fanta says. YouTube has great vids about how to choose the right size, very important.

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