Gov. Jay Nixon vetoed SB 202 which would have repealed Missouri's motorcycle helmet law.
In his veto letter, Nixon wrote, "Head injuries are the leading cause of death in motorcycle crashes. Without a helmet, a motorcyclist is 40 percent more likely to suffer a fatal head injury than a helmeted motorcyclist in a crash.
"It is estimated from 1984 to 2006, helmets saved the life of 19,230 motorcyclists and 12,320 additional lives would have been saved had helmets been worn by operators or passengers.
"In addition to safety issues, weakening or eliminating helmet laws causes a dramatic spike in the cost of treating patients who suffer injuries in motorcycle accidents. The state of Florida saw a 40 percent increase in the number of motorcyclists admitted to hospitals in the 30 months following the repeal of its helmet law in 2002, with the cost for treatment more than doubling to $44 million."
In a news release, Nixon said, "In terms of lives and of dollars, the cost of repealing Missouri's helmet law simply would have been too high. By keeping Missouri's helmet law intact, we will save numerous lives, while also saving Missouri taxpayers millions of dollars in increased health care costs. Keeping our helmet law in place was the safe and cost-effective choice for Missouri."