A motorcycle helmet is designed to protect from collision and against hard hits on the ground, but it cannot stop a bullet from reaching the wearer’s head.
In addition, the ballistic helmets can stop the entry of sharp materials like bullets and protect against blunt impact and related threats to riders.
Can a Motorcycle Helmet Stop a Bullet? A motorcycle helmet cannot stop a bullet as it is not designed with a resistant material that can efficiently resist the fast-moving bullet from piercing the hard structure. Moreover, using steel or carbon fiber can increase its cost and weight, which can be heavy for the shoulders. Furthermore, a motorcyclist gets exposed to bullets rarely, and the bulletproof helmet cannot protect them from collisions.
There are bulletproof helmets that can stop a bullet, but they are not suitable for use by motorcyclists.
Moreover, they have shock-absorbing pads and a retention system to improve comfort and safety for military people.
Furthermore, you can make your helmet bulletproof by using a carbon fiber material on the outer shell and laminating it with a thermoplastic polyurethane film to make it resistant.
Why a motorcycle helmet cannot stop a bullet?
The lesser resistance of motorcycle helmets to bullets is due to their different designs and use of a material having the lesser ability to stop them.
The cost of a bulletproof helmet is more than that of a regular motorcycle helmet used when riding on the motorbike for safety purposes.
The non-ballistic helmets are cheap to purchase as every rider can get them easily due to budget-friendly costs. You can purchase it for only $160 to $300 on average in different designs.
High-quality headgears are available at a maximum of $500 to $700, are made for experienced riders, and are more durable than those available at cheap rates.
However, the bulletproof headgear can cost around $250 to $1500, with varying models and different cut types according to their cost.
The used safety gear can cost you less than the original price, but it is better to check their expiry dates as they can be of no use to you if they have crossed their expiration date.
Furthermore, these can degrade after 3 to 5 years, and their durability depends on the maintenance efforts and the use of the material in their manufacturing.
Therefore, motorcycle helmets are designed at a cost-effective price that can suit every rider’s budget, so they prefer to wear them before going out on the road.
Bulletproof helmets are heavy
The non-ballistic helmets are light in weight and comfortable to use. Those providing full face coverage have an average weight of 2.2 to 3.3 pounds.
There are some flip-flop safety headgears that are heavier than those covering full-face as they support a mechanism of flipping the visors up.
Moreover, it is difficult to carry a heavy structure on the head when it exceeds a weight of 3.5 to 3.8 pounds. It can cause strain on the neck muscles and feels like a burden on the head.
Ideally, it needs to be 2.6 to 3 pounds as a lightweight and easy-to-carry product on the head removes stress on the neck.
However, the weight of bulletproof helmets is higher than non-ballistic ones, 3.4 to 3.6 pounds, which are slightly heavier and can also reach 4 pounds weight.
It is better to choose lightweight headgear to prevent headaches and restrictions in neck movements. In addition, a large and heavy-weight object on the head causes discomfort and impedes visibility.
Rare exposure to bullets
Motorcycle helmets are not resistant to bullets because they are mainly designed to protect riders from collisions and prevent head injuries.
Motorcycle riders are not regularly exposed to sharp spherical objects, which decreases the need for such ballistic headgear for these people as they only need protection from collisions.
However, military people have to use protective gear because they are exposed to bullets frequently.
No protection in collisions
You are only protected from bullets if you have purchased a bulletproof helmet for regular use.
However, it cannot help you in providing any protection during collisions as it does not cover your full face.
Moreover, a motorcyclist needs protection from fractures and head injuries only; that’s why they are not suitable for regular riders.
This is the reason that manufacturing industries are not showing interest in constructing such anti-ballistic headgear.
There prefer to design a product that can act as a barrier when you fall on the road and protect you from severe injuries.
Use of non-ballistic material
The motorcycle helmets are made of fiberglass and polycarbonate plastic material which are inexpensive materials and do not increase the overall cost.
In addition, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) is also used in the production of regular safety helmets as it has high impact resistance and provides protection to your head.
The polystyrene foam inside the outer shell can absorb the shock and disperse the stress equally in all directions.
Moreover, the ballistic ones are made of Lexan, a polycarbonate polymer with better resistance against a fast bullet-like steel material.
So, these helmets are made of non-ballistic material that cannot stop a sharp object with a pointed end from coming inside the layered structure.
Sharpness and speed of a bullet
The bullet has a high potential to penetrate deep inside the material because it has a unique spherical shape.
Moreover, it has a speed of almost 1200 to 1500 mph that can efficiently penetrate carbon fiber, and the foam padding as these cannot act as a barrier to a shot fired by a gun.
However, the motorcycle helmet is designed to absorb the high impact of sudden falls, shatter it equally on the whole surface, and protect the head.
Therefore, it cannot resist the sharp bullet coming at high speed with good penetration power.
Is it legal to wear a bulletproof helmet?
The bulletproof helmets are capable of deflecting projectiles and blocking penetration. They are mainly designed for military people and armed forces who need such protection.
In addition, it is considered illegal in many states for motorcyclists to wear such helmets as they are of no use to them due to little or no resistance during a collision.
Moreover, security guards and law enforcement people can wear these types of bulletproof helmets on their motorcycles because they are more likely to be exposed to bullets.
It is only legal to use on the Federal level and imposes restrictions in many states where regular motorcyclists cannot wear them. You have to pay the penalty for wearing body armor on the road.