More midstaters hitting slopes in helmets - abc27 WHTM

More midstaters hitting slopes in helmets

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For former ski instructor Scott Kelley, when it comes to his daughter learning how to ski, it's do as I say, not as I do.

"I said definitely you are going to wear a helmet because I didn't and I had five or six concussions myself doing crazy things off of jumps and into trees and stuff like that," said Kelley.

Just recently, Formula One race car driver Michael Schumacher suffered serious head injuries from a skiing accident. Officials say his helmet saved his life and all the horror stories of high impact collisions were enough of a reason for Brian Sharman and his family to all protect their heads.

"We heard some of the stories about hitting trees and stuff. We just figured for 75 dollars it's better to be safe than sorry and have a tragic accident," said Sharman.

According to the National Ski Areas Association, 67 percent of skiers and snowboarders wore helmets last year, but that number was not always so high.

"Wearing a helmet was even unheard of. In fact, there were a lot of ski racers that didn't wear them," said Chris Dudding, marketing director at Roundtop Mountain Resort.

Dudding has spent his whole life on the slopes, both for work and for play, and has noticed a huge helmet trend.

"It's grown exponentially over the last few years. I would say before then, well, less than half of the people wore them," said Dudding.

Some people we caught up with say they have never once used a helmet.

"I have taken some falls and hit my head, I don't think there is any major damage, but you never know," said Mike Strajcek of Maryland.

Perhaps it's a risk to ride without a helmet, but it's a risk Scott Kelley no longer wants to take.

"With concussions mainly, and the injuries and what can happen in the future, with memory loss and stuff like that, so I expect more helmets now and it's definitely in the last five to 10 years there have been a lot more," said Kelley.


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