Ok gang, final push is here. We need votes in the Senate next. We need everyone to email or call their Senator and give them reasons to vote for this. Its important we tell them what this bill is about, they will probably know next to nothing about it other than the text of the bill. Calls are better than an email, you won't get to talk to them but their aide will listen to you and pass it on. But if you don't want to call, then please email. It all helps.
You can find your Senator at the link below. We need to do this right meow, it will almost certainly be voted on by Thursday of next week.
Below is a quick idea on an email you can copy and paste if you want. The important points are: We can still hear just fine. This isn't about loud bikes its about wind noise. This isn't about music, that is still specifically prohibited. That it is about sound levels that far exceed OSHA rules in the workplace.
Here is a cut and paste email you can use if you want, or just steal my awesome ideas. I would use an email subject that contains the bill number. SB 548
I am writing you to ask you to support SB 548 which makes a minor but much needed change to ORC 4511.84. SB 548 is a simple modification to 4511.84 to add a very specific exception for motorcycles to allow hearing protection while still maintaining the prohibition of music devices such as ear buds and head phones.
In its current form this law is antiquated and does not account for the medical community’s better understanding of hearing loss and it’s causes.
In fact the Ohio BMV, unaware that ear plugs are prohibited, states in their handbook for new motorcycle riders:
“Long-term exposure to engine and wind noise can cause permanent hearing damage, even if you have a quiet motorcycle and wear a full-face helmet. Whether you choose disposable foam plugs or reusable custom-molded devices, properly worn hearing protection reduces noise, while allowing you to hear important sounds like car horns and sirens.”
I have a quiet motorcycle, and I wear a full face helmet. When I don’t wear ear plugs I can clearly tell my hearing has been impacted after a day of riding. They ring and buzz, just like being at a loud concert. At 70 MPH on a freeway the wind noise inside a motorcycle helmet approaches that of a jet aircraft taking off 100 feet away. It greatly exceeds OSHA regulations for noise in the workplace.
Yes, I ignore the law and wear ear plugs as do a great many other riders I know. One of whom just got a $95 dollar ticket for doing so. I can assure you that we can hear sirens and horns. Ear plugs are selective in what noise they block.
Simply put current law is forcing a motorcycle rider to suffer permanent hearing loss. 4511.84 needs to be amended with an exception for hearing protection for motorcycle riders as many other states have already done and SB 548 does that while maintaining the needed prohibition of ear buds and music devices.
A group of us has worked very hard the last two years to get 548 through the House and now to the Senate floor. In the House there was no opposition testimony and it passed the House with 100 percent Yea's. There was no opposition testimony in the Senate committee and we also passed out of the committee with 100 percent yes votes.
Thank you in advance for your support on this issue.