Objectives: This study evaluated the effect of the motorcycle helmet law implemented in Taiwan on June 1, 1997.
Methods: Collecting data on 8795 cases of motorcycle-related head injuries from 56 major Taiwanese hospitals, we compared the situation 1 year before and after implementation of the helmet law.
Results: After implementation of the law, the number of motorcycle-related head injuries decreased by 33%, from 5260 to 3535. Decreases in length of hospital stay and in severity of injury and better outcome were also seen. The likelihood ratio chi 2 test showed that severity decreased after the law's implementation (P < .001). Full helmets were found to be safer than half-shell helmets.
Conclusion: The helmet law effectively decreased the mortality and morbidity from motorcycle-related head injuries.