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#246756 - 06/08/12 11:28 AM Re: Tornado helmets [Re: hikermor]
7point82 Offline
Addict

Registered: 11/24/05
Posts: 478
Loc: Oklahoma
Originally Posted By: hikermor
I think it would be more reasonable course would be to use the helmet you already have acquired for your favorite activity - motorcycling, football, climbing, whitewater canoeing, etc. and press it into service during a tornado. ...snip


I live in the Oklahoma & I don't think I've heard anyone suggest buying a helmet specifically for tornadoes. However, several sources have suggested some sort of hard shell helmet would seem to be beneficial since so many tornado injuries are from flying debris. The common sense approach I have heard is that if your kids have baseball batting helmets, football helmets, motorcycle/atv helmets laying around go ahead and throw them on if you have to take cover from an imminent threat; especially if you are sheltering somewhere that is not a hardened shelter.
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#246757 - 06/08/12 12:08 PM Re: Tornado helmets [Re: haertig]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief
Geezer

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 6346
Loc: southern Cal
Thanks, haetig!

I would have thought I was up on all the various rappeling gadgets that have been produced over the last few decades, but I have never encountered the Longhorn Ring, although I am definitely a fan of MSR products. I'll bet the Longhorn kinked the rope like crazy, however.
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#246801 - 06/09/12 06:41 PM Re: Tornado helmets [Re: Arney]
comms Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/23/08
Posts: 1502
Loc: Mesa, AZ
Originally Posted By: Arney

I'm curious--for someone with your history, did someone like a neurologist ever recommend that you wear a helmet for more than the usual helmet-wearing activities?



I've had a few doctors recommend a non-specific helmet for activities that might involve a fall or hit. (By non-specific they meant, you should wear a helmet for motorcycling or bicycling but if you didn't do those, having A helmet for protection is smart in my case)

I went to a neurologist after my last concussion and had a serious issue with him after two sessions, blew him up and walked out. Long Story Short: I went to a general meet and greet one day with my wife, then came back with her and I did a 7 hour mental assessment profile, basic school type testing and some electrical profiling. After he gave me the usual good new, bad news he tried to pigeon hole me into being depressed and putting me on meds. I was not depressed and after an argument over that I walked out. It was like the word 'depression' was raining money from heaven on him if I copped to it. I will grudgingly go back to a neurologist when/if I get another but not that one.

Normally after my concussions if I had any follow on work it was for issues watching swelling and subdural hematomas and/or shrinks and cognitive therapists to work on the functional skills I needed to adjust my daily patterns.
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#246804 - 06/09/12 07:59 PM Re: Tornado helmets [Re: comms]
Arney Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/15/05
Posts: 2485
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: comms
I went to a neurologist after my last concussion and had a serious issue with him after two sessions, blew him up and walked out.
(emphasis mine)

Gosh, I really hope you meant to say "blew up at him"--images from The Hurt Locker came to mind...

I'm not saying this applies to you personally, comms, but just using this space to say that we're really only scratching the surface of acknowledging, let alone understanding, the often subtle but very real cognitive and emotional effects of head injuries, even ones that don't seem that severe. These effects often last a lifetime. A decade spent fighting two wars where the IED is the main weapon of choice and where traumatic brain injury is the defining injury of these conflicts has pushed the issue to the forefront. Medicine is still pretty simplistic in how it evaluates the more subtle aspects of head injuries.

I guess we shouldn't leave athletes out either. Football player Junior Seau's recent suicide (along with many other suicides by NFL players) illustrates the toll that repeated blows to the head can take. Knowing what we know now, if I had children, I don't think I would let them play football. Autopsies reveal that even high school players can already show signs of permanent brain injuries, and these changes can occur in players who say they've never had concussions.

But back to the original question for a sec, brain injuries can be incredibly severe and debilitating, so if a helmet of some sort can prevent or at least mitigate the damage from some sort of blow to the head during a tornado (or even when walking around the debris and torn up structures afterwards) then it is well worth it. Not sure how practical it is to expect to get to it in many tornado situations, but worth it if works out.

You sometimes see people on gun forums brag that they have a gun within two steps in every room of their house, so it's not beyond the realm of possibility for someone in tornado alley to have a hard hat or other head protection in multiple places. (How come you never see folks bragging about having a first aid kit in every room? wink )

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#246808 - 06/09/12 08:25 PM Re: Tornado helmets [Re: Arney]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief
Geezer

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 6346
Loc: southern Cal
It isn't that hard to know where your protective gear stays and have it handy. Consider keeping it close by when the weather forecast is unfavorable, a time when you might take other precautions (something like Wildman's HurCon scale).

I don't keep a first aid kit in every room in the house, but I always have one in my briefcase and another in my backpack. A third formal kit is in my waist pack when on the bike. I always have band-aids in my wallet. More and more often I carry a set of nitrile gloves together with a bandanna in my hip pocket.
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#246809 - 06/09/12 08:48 PM Re: Tornado helmets [Re: TeacherRO]
Bingley Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/27/08
Posts: 1383
Haven't you picked out a closet (or a spot) you'll hide in? Just keep the helmet in there, along with a crowbar in case you need to pry your way out -- if you survive a direct hit.

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#246810 - 06/09/12 08:50 PM Re: Tornado helmets [Re: TeacherRO]
ireckon Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 04/01/10
Posts: 1622
Loc: Northern California
A full motorcycle helmet seems like the way to go because of the built-in eye protection and the excessive padding. Accordingly, football, batting, hockey, climbing, biking, or a whatever helmet seems to be inferior for our purposes here.
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#246880 - 06/11/12 03:43 AM Re: Tornado helmets [Re: TeacherRO]
Pete Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/20/09
Posts: 1345
"My daughter is big time into climbing. As a birthday gift a few years back we bought her a good quality climbing helmet. We now find out that if her belayer does not have a helmet, she gives hers to them. Good logic. If you lose your belayer, you're in a world of hurt. But that leaves her exposed if she loans her helmet. So now we're off to buy a second helmet for her to give to her lesser-equipped climbing buddies should the need arise. Most of her climbing partners DO have their own helmets, but not 100% of them (the old "poor college student excuse"!) We just bought her a new rope for her birthday this year. Wow, now THOSE are expensive! I had no idea. But even that rope cost pales in comparison to this newfangled "trad rack" that she wants. Ouch! And I don't even think that "trad" ("traditional") is quite what I would have called traditional back in my day. We had chocks and nuts. Now they have these expensive cable-springy-geary-cam things that look like something off of Star Wars. It used to be so much cheaper to climb back when I was young and doing it..."

i used to do a lot of climbing.
In my days helmets were considered bulky and a "nuisance" ... we only used them on routes where there were known rockfall hazards. Although a few climbers were injured/killed from impact between head and rock face - it was really pretty uncommon. However, times have changed and it appears that many climbers are wearing them now. I suppose that's a good change, really.

Ropes have always been a BIG issue in climbing. Considering the "advanced technology" you would think that companies could wind a good rope. But truth is ... a lot of ropes (even expensive ones) are NOT as good as they are cracked up to be. It's not a problem with strength. It's a problem with how they handle during repetitive usage ... they tend to kink, or are not supple enough, if they are not made well. I owned several ropes over my years in climbing, but only thought highly of one. That was an Edelrid rope (Switzerland) - but couldn't honestly tell you if they are still in business. The rest of the gear , incl. the rack, adds up to a lot of $$.

Funny thing. I was just thinking about my years of climbing a couple of days ago. I climbed SO MANY rock faces using protection that was sketchy ... I had pro into the rocks, but the small items would never have taken a long fall. They would have just ripped out. It was darn lucky I didn't come off - on some of the run-out routes. Hahahaha ! I guess we all survive our crazy younger years :-)

Pete2

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#246883 - 06/11/12 04:43 AM Re: Tornado helmets [Re: Pete]
Teslinhiker Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/14/09
Posts: 1342
Originally Posted By: Pete

In my days helmets were considered bulky and a "nuisance" ... we only used them on routes where there were known rockfall hazards. Although a few climbers were injured/killed from impact between head and rock face - it was really pretty uncommon. However, times have changed and it appears that many climbers are wearing them now. I suppose that's a good change, really.
Pete2


My best and hardcore climbing days are behind me now as I slowly lost interest in the sport after doing it for years. Nowadays, when we do the few yearly climbs, a helmet is mandatory for all climbers, or you do not climb with us and there is absolutely no exceptions to this rule.

My helmet of choice is the Petzl Ecrin Roc which was recently discontinued by the manufacturer after several successful years of sales but is still widely available online until retailers thin out their inventory.

As for rope, many thoughts on this but do not want to hijack the thread any more then it already is.
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Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.

John Lubbock

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#246887 - 06/11/12 11:52 AM Re: Tornado helmets [Re: Teslinhiker]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief
Geezer

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 6346
Loc: southern Cal
Some years ago climbing helmets were indeed bulky and a nuisance. The "Joe Brown" was a fiberglass monster - heavy, bulky, but protective - I treated one victim whose life was undoubtedly saved by his JB. Like Teslinhiker, I have used a Petzl Ecrin with great satisfaction - it is about time I retired mine, but about all I do now is the occasional rappel, although all of my recent ones have een in situations where a helmet is mandatory. They are well worth wearing, so if I were ever in a tornado, I would hope I would have the opportunity to slap a helmet of some sort on my head
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