HomeNews & FeaturesSydney Council propose Helmets with License Plates

Sydney Council propose Helmets with License Plates

This is not a joke, the Mosman Council, on the North Shore in Sydney, is proposing that cyclists wear helmets with prominent numberplate display. Designer Toby King presented his helmet design concept to the council on Tuesday as the council prepares a submission to the NSW state government in support of cyclist registration.

At a glance it is easy to understand why the Mayor and councillors in Mosman find the idea of the Smart Helmet attractive, it is an easy replacement to genuine research and can easily be sold to the community as an apparent ‘easy solution’.

Cyclist registration does not address the core issue of motorist frustration – cyclists obeying the law with registration will still be perceived as a hindrance. Cyclist registration / licensing is a short term option that will create long term problems and increase cost for all, this has been explored in our article describing the stupidity of bicycle and cyclist registration.

Spending tax payer money and actively pursuing these ‘flawed solutions’ deflects attention away from genuine solutions; cyclist and motorist education as well as intelligent and integrated transport infrastructure.

Credit should be given to the designer, Toby King, for exploring technology, the helmet includes rider safety protection, head-up display, sensors, brake lights and a rear-view mirror. The helmet is a concept design and not a finished product however is promoted on the website smarthat.info on the false premise that it is “also addressing some of the more inflammatory issues between cyclists, pedestrians and road users.”

The Daily Telegraph Report on this story,  discusses the designers intentions, “Mr King acknowledged the proposal was controversial, saying he would prefer to keep his name out of the public eye in case of any backlash from cyclists against the idea of compulsory registration.”

Unfortunately there is too much discussion and interest in bicycle registration and licensing by parties who can use this to gain political popularity. The politicians are avoiding disclosing the flaws and the costs to their constituents and communities. While all levels of Australian government should not be spending any tax-payer money research and implementing bicycle registration and licensing, it is obvious that the proposals come from politicians who have not done the basic homework. Perhaps some tax-payer money has to be wasted to prove that it is not viable – but it also requires the politicians to listen to and accept the research results.

What can bike riders and the community de? Support cyclist representative and advocacy groups to educate the politicians on the real costs and engage the politicians requesting ‘real’ answers.

Photo © Smarthat.info

Christopher Jones
Christopher Joneshttps://www.bicycles.net.au
Christopher Jones is a recreational cyclist and runs a design agency, Signale. As the driving force behind Bicycles.net.au he has one of each 'types' of bicycles.
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