« Back to Archive

helmet-mounted camera, dangerous?

Formula 1 driver Michael Schumacher's traumatic brain injuries—sustained during a skiing accident last year—were caused by a helmet-mounted GoPro camera, a French journalist in contact with the family said this week.
2014-10-13 07:06:31
The brain is basically floating inside the skull, and if the skull moves violently this can lead to brain damage. I suppose something mounted on the top or sides would be the most likely to catch and cause the head to move suddenly during a crash. This is the reason more advanced helmet designs like say MIPS include a low-friction layer between the helmet and the head to allow the helmet to slip. So, yes, a camera mounted on the helmet might cause a problem. OTOH you are combining a low-likelihood event with another low-likelihood event. A crash is unlikely, a crash where your helmet slides and catches on something more unlikely still. So probably the benefit of a helmet camera outweighs the likelihood that it will someday worsen your prospects during a crash.
2014-10-13 08:14:34
The claim that they're making in Schumacher's case is that the mounted camera caused the helmet to shatter, as opposed to catching on something. Either way, helmets aren't tested with cameras attached, so I can see how the addition of a hard object could interfere with the proper function of the helmet. For my own part, I haven't used a GoPro, but my Contour camera felt really heavy and awkward when I tried helmet-mounting it, so I ended up putting it on the handlebars instead.
2014-10-13 08:38:47
somewhat (tenuously, tangentially) related - I need a bike jersey like this.
2014-10-13 10:24:51
I'd be surprised if the mount is good enough to hold in a collision like that. My guess would be that the camera would get destroyed or would fly off the helmet.
2014-10-13 15:47:20