Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thread)

Equipment and On Road Behaviour, Laws and Rules. Cycling Promotion and Advocacy

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby human909 » Thu Oct 04, 2012 7:36 pm

biker jk wrote:
human909 wrote:
biker jk wrote:But in Australia, we don't have the infrastructure or cyclist friendly road rules, so MHLs are required.

:shock: Clearly MHLs fixes the problem. :roll:

Well if the aim is to reduce head injuries in this context, MHLs are required. You obviously didn't understand the point I was making (or perhaps misconstrued it) and hence your juvenile response.

First off you can wear helmets without making the mandatory. Secondly it isn't even clear that MHLs do reduce the incident rate of head injuries. The significant impact it has has on cycling rates and thus improved safety is not to be underestimated. Thirdly the bit I was alluding to, if cars are hitting cyclists regularly enough that "helmets are needed" then helmets are going to fix the problem that like encouraging wearing motorcycle leathers in a gun fight.
human909
 
Posts: 5287
Joined: Tue Dec 01, 2009 10:48 am

by BNA » Thu Oct 04, 2012 8:09 pm

BNA
 

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby Comedian » Thu Oct 04, 2012 8:09 pm

biker jk wrote:
Howzat wrote:The point is that cycling advocates have to make priorities.

Prioritising the repeal of MHLs has the drawback that some of the most common arguments for repeal stand in opposition to some of the best arguments for cycling infrastructure.

This is a problem, as there are plenty of opponents of cycling ready to question any spending Aussie taxpayer funds on cycleways.

If cyclist are arguing it's already safe and all we need to do to lift cycling participation is get rid of helmet laws, then we're inadvertently making Alan Jones's case for him.

If we don't think this out carefully, we'll end up with Dutch-style helmet laws and Australian-style cycling infrastructure. :roll:


+1. Post of the year. That's always been my response to the anti-MHL argument. If we had the separated cycling infrastructure of Northern Europe and the same laws regarding motorists being at fault in accidents with cyclists then sure you probably wouldn't need MHLs. But in Australia, we don't have the infrastructure or cyclist friendly road rules, so MHLs are required.

The problem with these arguments is that there are a great many parts of all our big capital cities where high quality separated infrastructure exists. Why shouldn't people be allowed to use these in the same way they do in europe? We're talking choice... not banning helmets out of spite.
Once you can climb hills on a bike it's all downhill. :mrgreen:

Hopefully I'll know what that's like..... one day. :shock: :lol:

Image
User avatar
Comedian
 
Posts: 4414
Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2010 7:35 pm
Location: Brisbane

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby DavidS » Thu Oct 04, 2012 10:49 pm

Simonn have you been to Amsterdam? I was there earlier this year, yes there were a lot of bike paths, but not every street has them and, I know this will surprise you, when you have to share the road with cars and there is no separate bike lane, they don't force you to put a helmet on.

Much as I support cycling infrastructure the reality is that no city in the world has cycling infrastructure to replace all of their roads. There is a very simple reason for this, roads are for vehicles and bicycles are vehicles. We should be able to safely share the roads with other vehicles such as cars. We need to fix the problem, ie: bad driving, not just band aid it by making it mandatory to wear a helmet which is not rated for either the speed or mass of cars.

The only way to make cycling a normal activity is to make riding on roads normal. It also would help to not give the impression cycling is very dangerous by legally mandating we wear safety equipment in the form of helmets.

DS
Image

Riding: Cannondale Quick Speed 2
User avatar
DavidS
 
Posts: 1405
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2010 11:24 pm
Location: Melbourne

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby Howzat » Thu Oct 04, 2012 11:07 pm

DavidS wrote:The only way to make cycling a normal activity is to make riding on roads normal. It also would help to not give the impression cycling is very dangerous by legally mandating we wear safety equipment in the form of helmets.

I know where you're going and don't entirely disagree - but once again, in making the case for the repeal of MHLs, we end up arguing against cycling infrastructure.

We cyclists have just got to get our advocacy priorities straight on this. Or else the anti-bike blowhards will win hands down.
User avatar
Howzat
 
Posts: 539
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2012 7:08 pm
Location: Canberra

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby DavidS » Thu Oct 04, 2012 11:14 pm

Howzat wrote:
DavidS wrote:The only way to make cycling a normal activity is to make riding on roads normal. It also would help to not give the impression cycling is very dangerous by legally mandating we wear safety equipment in the form of helmets.

I know where you're going and don't entirely disagree - but once again, in making the case for the repeal of MHLs, we end up arguing against cycling infrastructure.

We cyclists have just got to get our advocacy priorities straight on this. Or else the anti-bike blowhards will win hands down.


To some extent I agree, especially since the MHLs don't look like they are going to be repealed any time soon. Yes, I would like to see MHLs repealed but I also concede there are other issues that we are likely to get more traction on.

That said, this is the MHL thread so that's the debate here. Plus, a bit of pressure on this issue can only help.

DS
Image

Riding: Cannondale Quick Speed 2
User avatar
DavidS
 
Posts: 1405
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2010 11:24 pm
Location: Melbourne

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby Xplora » Thu Oct 04, 2012 11:16 pm

biker jk wrote:
human909 wrote:
biker jk wrote:But in Australia, we don't have the infrastructure or cyclist friendly road rules, so MHLs are required.

:shock: Clearly MHLs fixes the problem. :roll:


Well if the aim is to reduce head injuries in this context, MHLs are required. You obviously didn't understand the point I was making (or perhaps misconstrued it) and hence your juvenile response.

I will go further than H909... MHLs are NOT correlated with vastly improved head injuries rates. It would be crazy obvious that MHL made a big difference to head injury rates from the data. It is not. It would be crazy obvious if NZ had much better injury rates than any number of other first world countries. They do not.

I agree that getting along isn't necessarily something we can aim for, but a helmet won't help you if someone knowingly messes with you on the road.
Xplora
 
Posts: 6625
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2010 11:33 pm
Location: TL;DR

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby Ross » Fri Oct 05, 2012 8:57 am

I don't understand the (for want of a better word) "argument" put forth that if we had Amsterdam style segregated cycleways then we could do away with helmets. Is there some high-tech force field installed on these that somehow prevent crashes? How does it work? There would still be sticks, rocks, other cyclists of varying abilities and speeds and likely to be the odd pedestrian and stray animals as well, which can cause crashes.
Image
User avatar
Ross
 
Posts: 4070
Joined: Sat Nov 07, 2009 7:53 pm

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby ball bearing » Fri Oct 05, 2012 10:16 am

This ought to spark another flurry of outraged responses...

http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/society-a ... z28NMFO4D5

"Bike helmet critics not using their heads...

First, cycling has flourished since the helmet legislation was enacted in 1991. There is no sign of widespread grassroots ideological opposition to the law, any more than there is to mandatory helmets for motorcyclists or seatbelts in cars.

Cycling rates are rising rapidly and claims that repealing the law will encourage more cyclists are light on fact and heavy on opinion.

Second, there is solid evidence that cyclist head injuries have declined while other cyclist injuries have not during this period: that is, when accidents happen, helmets make an important difference. No one should need reminding that serious head injuries may exact a lifelong toll on the individual and be a great cost to the community..."
ball bearing
 
Posts: 565
Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2012 1:43 pm
Location: Watching the ships on the Southern Ocean

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby human909 » Fri Oct 05, 2012 10:21 am

Ross wrote:I don't understand the (for want of a better word) "argument" put forth that if we had Amsterdam style segregated cycleways then we could do away with helmets. Is there some high-tech force field installed on these that somehow prevent crashes? How does it work? There would still be sticks, rocks, other cyclists of varying abilities and speeds and likely to be the odd pedestrian and stray animals as well, which can cause crashes.


Neither do I.

But the continuing rationalisation by many of why we need helmets and the dutch don't is to do with the safety of our roads. Saying that Australia is different.
human909
 
Posts: 5287
Joined: Tue Dec 01, 2009 10:48 am

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby Howzat » Fri Oct 05, 2012 10:41 am

Ross wrote:There would still be sticks, rocks, other cyclists of varying abilities and speeds and likely to be the odd pedestrian and stray animals as well, which can cause crashes.

Or my favourite, the fine gravel on bends that washes across Canberra cycle paths after every spot of rain.

Helmets in any individual case are a good idea. They prevent injuries to the rider and medical costs to everyone else. But they are a PITA for bike share schemes. And perhaps for riding at <15 kmh - the "soft focus long-haired model with flowers in the basket" kind of riding we see in photo shoots - are helmets necessary? Maybe not.

But does making an exception mean we going to have a policy that requires bike cops with radar guns ticketing the helmetless who go above a certain speed? And, with a relaxation of the rules we can be pretty sure that the first people to not wear helmets would be the same guys who commute through red lights every morning :roll: So a relaxation may mean higher medical costs for taxpayers - and maybe we'd rather spend that money on decent infrastructure, something more than the spot of green paint on the road stuff we tend to get fobbed off with.

From a pragmatic/political point of view, I don't think MHLs are likely to be repealed, especially after the UNSW Rissel/Voukelatos anti-MHL paper got pulled last year for being junk science. That really was a hit below the waterline for anti-MHL credibility as far as policy makers are concerned.
User avatar
Howzat
 
Posts: 539
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2012 7:08 pm
Location: Canberra

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby human909 » Fri Oct 05, 2012 10:57 am

Howzat wrote:Helmets in any individual case are a good idea. They prevent injuries to the rider and medical costs to everyone else.

That is extraordinarily rare. Most of the time helmets do absolutely nothing.

In The Netherlands helmet wearing is <1% yet they don't have big issues with injuries and medical costs.

Howzat wrote:And, with a relaxation of the rules we can be pretty sure that the first people to not wear helmets would be the same guys who commute through red lights every morning :roll:
That is an interesting conclusion. Furthermore what gives you the impression that this group is more likely to be in an accident. If they are doing it every morning then they are probably pretty good at ensuring they don't get hit. :wink:
human909
 
Posts: 5287
Joined: Tue Dec 01, 2009 10:48 am

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby twizzle » Fri Oct 05, 2012 1:28 pm

Ross wrote:I don't understand the (for want of a better word) "argument" put forth that if we had Amsterdam style segregated cycleways then we could do away with helmets. Is there some high-tech force field installed on these that somehow prevent crashes? How does it work? There would still be sticks, rocks, other cyclists of varying abilities and speeds and likely to be the odd pedestrian and stray animals as well, which can cause crashes.


Didn't you know? Accidents only happen to other people, and if you don't personally know them, it has no significance.

IMO, the whole anti-MHL thing has nothing to do with increasing cycling participation, it's about individuals wanting to be able to do whatever they want in public.

PS - The seven year old currently has his arm in a sling, the frame of the glasses was able to be straightened, and I'm very thankful that the front of the helmet kept his face off the concrete. The cost of avoiding extra pain & suffering in this specific case was $25 at BigW.
I ride, therefore I am.
...real cyclists don't have squeaky chains...
User avatar
twizzle
 
Posts: 6382
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 11:45 am
Location: Taking a break.

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby Percrime » Fri Oct 05, 2012 1:34 pm

I swear.. its not pro MHL and anti MHL people but instead anti MHL and "those evil people want to ban me from wearing a helmet and make me die horribly"

And I also swear if anyone ever blames me cos their kid cant ride and falls off I,ll hunt em down and make them eat a helmet.
Percrime
 
Posts: 998
Joined: Thu Jan 29, 2009 8:41 am

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby jules21 » Fri Oct 05, 2012 1:46 pm

twizzle wrote:PS - The seven year old currently has his arm in a sling, the frame of the glasses was able to be straightened, and I'm very thankful that the front of the helmet kept his face off the concrete. The cost of avoiding extra pain & suffering in this specific case was $25 at BigW.

pfft.. the 7 year old obviously doesn't know how to ride a bike properly. it would have been his fault if he'd hurt his head, no sympathy from me. what does this have to do with others being made to wear helmets?
Image
User avatar
jules21
 
Posts: 8999
Joined: Thu Apr 02, 2009 10:14 pm
Location: deep in the pain cave

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby KenGS » Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:10 pm

ball bearing wrote:This ought to spark another flurry of outraged responses...

http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/society-a ... z28NMFO4D5

"Bike helmet critics not using their heads...

First, cycling has flourished since the helmet legislation was enacted in 1991. There is no sign of widespread grassroots ideological opposition to the law, any more than there is to mandatory helmets for motorcyclists or seatbelts in cars.

Cycling rates are rising rapidly and claims that repealing the law will encourage more cyclists are light on fact and heavy on opinion.

Second, there is solid evidence that cyclist head injuries have declined while other cyclist injuries have not during this period: that is, when accidents happen, helmets make an important difference. No one should need reminding that serious head injuries may exact a lifelong toll on the individual and be a great cost to the community..."

Peddling a strawman that those opposing MHLs are also against better infrastructure. I note the shift in the argument by Olivier from "MHLs save lives" to "MHLs and cycling infrastructure reduce injuries". As good as an admission that the previous argument that MHLs save lives doesn't stack up.
That plus the obfuscation of the debate by conflation of the two would suggest that even "MHLs reduce injuries" is on shaky ground.
Otherwise, why not come out and say "we've got strong evidence that MHLs alone save lives and prevent injuries"
--Ken
Helmets! Bells! Rego!
User avatar
KenGS
 
Posts: 1463
Joined: Thu Sep 10, 2009 10:31 pm
Location: Rosanna, Victoria

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby human909 » Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:20 pm

twizzle wrote:IMO, the whole anti-MHL thing has nothing to do with increasing cycling participation, it's about individuals wanting to be able to do whatever they want in public.

Fancy that! We want individuals to be able to choose what goes on their head. What a terrible notion. Twizzle, no matter what your opinion is it doesn't change other peoples motives. You don't get to choose that twizzle. My motives to get rid of MHLs are to increasing cycling participation. This fact doesn't change no matter what you say to the contrary.

twizzle wrote:I'm very thankful that the front of the helmet kept his face off the concrete.

Without a chin guard a bicycle helmet has little chance of protecting the face. Seriously test it out. Even a forehead strike on the helmet would cause rotation and then a facial strike. The helmet most likely didn't protect his face. His arms did.

jules21 wrote:what does this have to do with others being made to wear helmets?

I'm still wondering that too. If twizzle or his son want to wear helmets nobody is wanting to stop them.
human909
 
Posts: 5287
Joined: Tue Dec 01, 2009 10:48 am

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby twizzle » Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:21 pm

Percrime wrote:I swear.. its not pro MHL and anti MHL people but instead anti MHL and "those evil people want to ban me from wearing a helmet and make me die horribly"

And I also swear if anyone ever blames me cos their kid cant ride and falls off I,ll hunt em down and make them eat a helmet.


For whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for thee.
I ride, therefore I am.
...real cyclists don't have squeaky chains...
User avatar
twizzle
 
Posts: 6382
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 11:45 am
Location: Taking a break.

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby jules21 » Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:23 pm

human909 wrote:I'm still wondering that too. If twizzle or his son want to wear helmets nobody is wanting to stop them.

precisely. while we're at it, we should repeal seat belt laws for the same reason.
Image
User avatar
jules21
 
Posts: 8999
Joined: Thu Apr 02, 2009 10:14 pm
Location: deep in the pain cave

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby human909 » Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:28 pm

jules21 wrote:
human909 wrote:I'm still wondering that too. If twizzle or his son want to wear helmets nobody is wanting to stop them.

precisely. while we're at it, we should repeal seat belt laws for the same reason.

That is not what is being discussed Jules. You are throwing another strawman in the mix.
human909
 
Posts: 5287
Joined: Tue Dec 01, 2009 10:48 am

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby jules21 » Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:40 pm

human909 wrote:
jules21 wrote:
human909 wrote:I'm still wondering that too. If twizzle or his son want to wear helmets nobody is wanting to stop them.

precisely. while we're at it, we should repeal seat belt laws for the same reason.

That is not what is being discussed Jules. You are throwing another strawman in the mix.

it's the same logic, just presented in a way that makes it easy to understand why it's flawed.
Image
User avatar
jules21
 
Posts: 8999
Joined: Thu Apr 02, 2009 10:14 pm
Location: deep in the pain cave

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby human909 » Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:47 pm

jules21 wrote:it's the same logic, just presented in a way that makes it easy to understand why it's flawed.

Yep. Thats it. The rest of the world has flawed logic because Jules says so. Meanwhile Australia is leading the way for cycling safety. :roll:
human909
 
Posts: 5287
Joined: Tue Dec 01, 2009 10:48 am

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby jules21 » Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:54 pm

human909 wrote:Yep. Thats it. The rest of the world has flawed logic because Jules says so. Meanwhile Australia is leading the way for cycling safety. :roll:

if MHLs are necessary (and i'm not going as far as advocating that), it's partly due to australia failing - not leading - in other areas of cycling safety.
Image
User avatar
jules21
 
Posts: 8999
Joined: Thu Apr 02, 2009 10:14 pm
Location: deep in the pain cave

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby human909 » Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:03 pm

Jules you are being so disingenuous here. You make accusations of flawed logic. And the turn around saying you are not advocating MHLs. Surely if you think the logic of free choice is flawed then you'd be against it? You are trying to have it both ways and as far as I can see just stirring up trouble. The only logic here that is flawed is yours.

human909 wrote:If twizzle or his son want to wear helmets nobody is wanting to stop them.

This certainly doesn't seem a statement that most people could deny.

Yet somehow you have turned it into accusations of flawed logic. :roll:
human909
 
Posts: 5287
Joined: Tue Dec 01, 2009 10:48 am

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby twizzle » Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:15 pm

human909 wrote:
human909 wrote:If twizzle or his son want to wear helmets nobody is wanting to stop them.
This certainly doesn't seem a statement that most people could deny.


Except that was never the point - my complaint is that children will follow modelled behavior, not what they are told. They see other children & adults riding without helmets, they will do it as well. All the evidence clearly showed that helmets reduce head injuries in children, but if you want them to wear them, you have to promote the behaviour!

PS - if you want more people to ride, spend more time riding rather than tilting at windmills. I spend an average of ten hours a week out in the traffic, I could stick to shared pathways and country back-roads, but I consider it important to get out there where the car-addicted public can see that cyclists do exist.
I ride, therefore I am.
...real cyclists don't have squeaky chains...
User avatar
twizzle
 
Posts: 6382
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 11:45 am
Location: Taking a break.

Re: Mandatory Helmet Laws & stuff (Was One & ONLY Helmet Thr

Postby jules21 » Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:15 pm

human909 wrote:If twizzle or his son want to wear helmets nobody is wanting to stop them.

This certainly doesn't seem a statement that most people could deny.

where did i deny that?
Image
User avatar
jules21
 
Posts: 8999
Joined: Thu Apr 02, 2009 10:14 pm
Location: deep in the pain cave

PreviousNext

Return to Cycling Safety and Advocacy

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users



Popular Bike Shops
Wiggle Wiggle UK
Ground Effect Ground Effect NZ
Ebay Ebay AU
Chain Reaction Cycles CRC UK

“Bicycles BNA Twitter
“Bicycles BNA Facebook
“Google+ BNA Google+
“Bicycles BNA Newsletter

> FREE BNA Stickers