Determinants of helmet and protective wear utilization among motorcycle drivers and passengers in Bamenda, Cameroon: A hospital-based, cross-sectional study

  • Bayee S. Tanyitiku
  • Maxime Tindong
  • Valirie Agbor
  • Makebe Haman
  • Azingala Fondong
  • Chobufo Ditah
  • Tsi Njim
Keywords: motorcycle injuries, helmet use, protective clothing, commercial motorcycle riders, Cameroon


Background: Injuries from road traffic accidents (RTA) are a major cause of mortality worldwide. Motorcycle riders are more likely to die from RTAs with risky-riding habits further increasing their risk of mortality. We sought to find out the determinants of no protective gear (no helmet nor protective clothing use) amongst motorcycle accident victims in Bamenda.

Methods: This was a cross-sectional study was carried out for four months in the Bamenda Regional Hospital (BRH) from September to November 2016 and throughout March 2017.

Results: The mean age of the 203 patients was 30.8 ± 13.2 years. 95.1% of patients were not wearing helmets prior to the accident while 84.3% did not have any form of protective clothing, 87.7% therefore did not have any protective gear. Commercial motorcycle riders were over four times more likely to not have any protective gear than patients using motorcycles for personal use (OR: 4.75; p = 0.028). 16.8% of the patients involved were admitted into the intensive care unit (ICU) and 2.0% died.

Conclusions: Commercial motorcycle riders are more likely to ride without protective gear. Measures to improve compliance with safety measures amongst motorcycle riders should be investigated and instituted.

Original Research