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The worst noise you’re subjected to when riding doesn’t come from your bike, but from the wind rushing past your helmet. At motorway speeds it’s loud enough to cause permanent hearing damage after as little as half an hour, and a long trip at speed often leads to noticeably reduced hearing and ringing in the ears for a day or so afterwards.


Earplugs are very cheap and easy to use and can save you from deafness later in life. And surprisingly, you tend to hear other traffic and the sound of your bike better than with the roar of the wind in your ears.


Try out different sorts – they’re available in chemists, bike shops and bike mag classifieds – then keep them clean and renew them frequently to avoid infections.


You’ll also find you get less tired on long journeys, which is another bonus to safety.

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