RCMP Manitoba is proudly displaying a helmet with a gaping hole as an example of how safety equipment saves lives.

On February 21, two groups of experienced snowmobile riders were each spending the Sunday on the trails near Freedom Road in the Falcon Beach area.

RCMP Manitoba says in a statement the wind made the trails a bit rough, but it was "nothing that would deter these seasoned snowmobilers."

The two groups both approached a curve, but there was trouble.

"It appears one snowmobile may have been over too far and tried to correct when the driver saw the oncoming sleds, but he overcorrected, causing the machine to roll with the rider still on it," RCMP say. " A driver from the other group was thrown from his sled when it collided with the rolling snowmobile."

Calling Falcon Beach RCMP officers, the duo arrived at the scene to find the men, finding both 54-years old, one from Winnipeg and one from Niverville. One of the injured men required hospital treatment. Alcohol was not a factor in the crash. 

bagsRCMP say the snowmobiler was wearnig extra protection. (RCMP Manitoba/Supplied)

"When the police officers saw the equipment of the rider from Winnipeg who had rolled on his snowmobile, there was a stark reminder of what could have happened if the rider had been less prepared."

The Winnipeg rider's helmet has a large hole penetrating the padding almost all the way to the other side and his jacket was exposed and scraped. Officers say if he was not wearing the extra protection, he would have died.