Government's Current Thinking on H*lmets - petition response



M

Mark T

Guest
Signed a petition, got this response:

<www.pm.gov.uk/output/Page15021.asp>


No-cycle-helmets - epetition reply

14 March 2008

We received a petition asking:

"We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to oppose the
introduction of any mandatory helmet laws for pedal cyclists."

Details of Petition:

"There is no unequivocal medical evidence to show that helmet wearing
helmet protects cyclists. In fact cyclists wearing helmets are more
likely to be involved in a collision with a motorist as motorists assume
such a cyclist is more competent and therefore take additional risks when
driving near one. Further, every country in which this law has been
introduced, levels of cycling have plummeted - thereby negating any
perceived 'benefits'."
Read the petition
Petitions home page
Read the Government's response

The Government does not have any plans to introduce mandatory helmet laws
for pedal cyclists. However, we believe that it is sensible for cyclists,
and especially children, to protect themselves by wearing a cycle helmet.
A review commissioned by the Department for Transport (Road Safety
Research Report No. 30, 2002) concluded that overall there is evidence
that bicycle helmets can be effective at reducing the incidence and
severity of head, brain and upper facial injuries and that they can be
effective in reducing injury for users of all ages, though particularly
for children.

The report also found that compulsory helmet wearing may have discouraged
some people from cycling, leading to decreased bicycle use. In
particular, it found that in the state of Victoria, Australia,
immediately following the introduction of helmet legislation, cycling
levels fell amongst children and particularly amongst teenagers, though
cycling levels amongst adults increased marginally. In Western Australia,
participation in cycling remained steady for most groups, but fell for
primary school children and recreational cyclists. In South Australia
there was a significant reduction in children cycling. In Ontario,
Canada, there was no effect on cycling rates.

The DfT is planning to commission a new research project on cyclists'
road safety soon. This will include an updated review of cycle helmet
effectiveness. The research project as a whole is likely to be 3 years in
duration, but an interim report on cycle helmets should be published by
summer 2009.

The DfT measures wearing rates periodically, most recently in 2006. The
2006 wearing rate survey shows that cycle helmet rates have gone up from
28% in 2004 to 31% on major built up roads and from 10% to 14% on minor
roads. The wearing rate for children on major roads increased from 14% to
18% and on minor roads from 6% to 9%. Whilst compulsion remains an option
that will be reviewed from time to time, at these levels making helmets
compulsory would cause enforcement difficulties and without greater
public acceptance could have an effect on levels of cycling.

However, the Government believes it would be irresponsible not to promote
a product that can reduce injuries and continues to promote helmet
wearing on a voluntary basis, especially by children.
 
S

Sir Jeremy

Guest
On 14 Mar, 16:26, Mark T
<[email protected]*turn_up_the_heat_to_reply*.com.invalid>
wrote:
> Signed a petition, got this response:
>
> <www.pm.gov.uk/output/Page15021.asp>
>
> No-cycle-helmets - epetition reply
>
> 14 March 2008
>
> We received a petition asking:
>
> "We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to oppose the
> introduction of any mandatory helmet laws for pedal cyclists."
>
> Details of Petition:
>
> "There is no unequivocal medical evidence to show that helmet wearing
> helmet protects cyclists. In fact cyclists wearing helmets are more
> likely to be involved in a collision with a motorist as motorists assume
> such a cyclist is more competent and therefore take additional risks when
> driving near one. Further, every country in which this law has been
> introduced, levels of cycling have plummeted - thereby negating any
> perceived 'benefits'."
> Read the petition
> Petitions home page
> Read the Government's response
>
> The Government does not have any plans to introduce mandatory helmet laws
> for pedal cyclists. However, we believe that it is sensible for cyclists,
> and especially children, to protect themselves by wearing a cycle helmet.
> A review commissioned by the Department for Transport (Road Safety
> Research Report No. 30, 2002) concluded that overall there is evidence
> that bicycle helmets can be effective at reducing the incidence and
> severity of head, brain and upper facial injuries and that they can be
> effective in reducing injury for users of all ages, though particularly
> for children.
>
> The report also found that compulsory helmet wearing may have discouraged
> some people from cycling, leading to decreased bicycle use. In
> particular, it found that in the state of Victoria, Australia,
> immediately following the introduction of helmet legislation, cycling
> levels fell amongst children and particularly amongst teenagers, though
> cycling levels amongst adults increased marginally. In Western Australia,
> participation in cycling remained steady for most groups, but fell for
> primary school children and recreational cyclists. In South Australia
> there was a significant reduction in children cycling. In Ontario,
> Canada, there was no effect on cycling rates.
>
> The DfT is planning to commission a new research project on cyclists'
> road safety soon. This will include an updated review of cycle helmet
> effectiveness. The research project as a whole is likely to be 3 years in
> duration, but an interim report on cycle helmets should be published by
> summer 2009.
>
> The DfT measures wearing rates periodically, most recently in 2006. The
> 2006 wearing rate survey shows that cycle helmet rates have gone up from
> 28% in 2004 to 31% on major built up roads and from 10% to 14% on minor
> roads. The wearing rate for children on major roads increased from 14% to
> 18% and on minor roads from 6% to 9%. Whilst compulsion remains an option
> that will be reviewed from time to time, at these levels making helmets
> compulsory would cause enforcement difficulties and without greater
> public acceptance could have an effect on levels of cycling.
>
> However, the Government believes it would be irresponsible not to promote
> a product that can reduce injuries and continues to promote helmet
> wearing on a voluntary basis, especially by children.



No compulsion yet beacuse we can't enforce it, but we'll carry on with
the propaganda (sorry, encouragement). I give it 5 years before
compulsion, starting with small children
 
M

Martin Dann

Guest
Mark T wrote:
> Signed a petition, got this response:
>
> <www.pm.gov.uk/output/Page15021.asp>
>
>
> No-cycle-helmets - epetition reply
>
> 14 March 2008
>
> We received a petition asking:
>
> "We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to oppose the
> introduction of any mandatory helmet laws for pedal cyclists."


I really liked the wording of the title of this petition ;-)

> Details of Petition:
>
> "There is no unequivocal medical evidence to show that helmet wearing
> helmet protects cyclists. In fact cyclists wearing helmets are more
> likely to be involved in a collision with a motorist as motorists assume
> such a cyclist is more competent and therefore take additional risks when
> driving near one. Further, every country in which this law has been
> introduced, levels of cycling have plummeted - thereby negating any
> perceived 'benefits'."


That bit could have been worded better.

> The Government does not have any plans to introduce mandatory helmet laws
> for pedal cyclists.


Good

> However,


Which means they lied in the previous sentence, what else can you expect
from them.


> However, the Government believes it would be irresponsible not to promote
> a product that can reduce injuries and continues to promote helmet
> wearing on a voluntary basis, especially by children.


This sounds a bit of a contradiction. If the government promotes
helmets, it discourages cycling. If the government really wants to
promote a healthy lifestyle, and thus life expectancy, it should not be
promoting/mandating helmets.
 
N

Nick Kew

Guest
On 14 Mar 2008 16:26:43 GMT
Mark T
<[email protected]*turn_up_the_heat_to_reply*.com.invalid>
wrote:

> We received a petition asking:
>
> "We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to oppose the
> introduction of any mandatory helmet laws for pedal cyclists."


Ouch. I refer anyone signing that to the power of denial.
Have you stopped beating your wife?

--
not me guv
 
In message <[email protected]>
David Hansen <[email protected]> wrote:

> It is worth repeating the short critique of this report at
> <http://www.cyclehelmets.org./mf.html?1038>


Let's hope a copy has been sent to all MPs.


--
Charles
Brompton P6R-Plus; CarryFreedom -YL, in Motspur Park
LCC; CTC. Roberts RoughStuff Tourer on order!
 
D

David Hansen

Guest
On Sun, 16 Mar 2008 08:56:02 GMT someone who may be
[email protected]m wrote this:-

>> It is worth repeating the short critique of this report at
>> <http://www.cyclehelmets.org./mf.html?1038>

>
>Let's hope a copy has been sent to all MPs.


MPs get bombarded with many things. It is better for constituents to
have a dialogue with their MP and bring such things up if necessary.


--
David Hansen, Edinburgh
I will *always* explain revoked encryption keys, unless RIP prevents me
http://www.opsi.gov.uk/acts/acts2000/00023--e.htm#54
 
D

David Lloyd

Guest
On 15 Mar, 19:06, Nick Kew <[email protected]> wrote:
> On 14 Mar 2008 16:26:43 GMT
> Mark T
> <[email protected]*turn_up_the_heat_to_reply*.com.invalid>
> wrote:
>
> > We received a petition asking:

>
> > "We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to oppose the
> > introduction of any mandatory helmet laws for pedal cyclists."

>
> Ouch.  I refer anyone signing that to the power of denial.
> Have you stopped beating your wife?
>
> --
> not me guv


We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to stop beating his
wife?

David Lloyd
 
D

David Damerell

Guest
Quoting Martin Dann <[email protected]>:
>This sounds a bit of a contradiction. If the government promotes
>helmets, it discourages cycling.


We know that _mandating_ them discourages cycling, but that promoting does
is speculation, albeit a very plausible-sounding speculation.
--
David Damerell <[email protected]> flcl?
Today is First Stilday, March - a weekend.
 
I

Ian Jackson

Guest
In article <T9F*[email protected]>,
David Damerell <[email protected]> wrote:
>Quoting Martin Dann <[email protected]>:
>>This sounds a bit of a contradiction. If the government promotes
>>helmets, it discourages cycling.

>
>We know that _mandating_ them discourages cycling, but that promoting does
>is speculation, albeit a very plausible-sounding speculation.


Franklin's critique of RR30 has some references about promotion. This
one stands out but there are others too:

http://www.trl.co.uk/store/report_detail.asp?srid=2451
Cycle helmet wearing in 1996
Bryan-brown, K,Taylor, S
TRL286

--
Ian Jackson personal email: <[email protected]>
These opinions are my own. http://www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~ijackson/
PGP2 key 1024R/0x23f5addb, fingerprint 5906F687 BD03ACAD 0D8E602E FCF37657
 
E

Ekul Namsob

Guest
Nick Kew <[email protected]> wrote:

> On 14 Mar 2008 16:26:43 GMT
> Mark T
> <[email protected]*turn_up_the_heat_to_reply*.com.invalid>
> wrote:
>
> > We received a petition asking:
> >
> > "We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to oppose the
> > introduction of any mandatory helmet laws for pedal cyclists."

>
> Ouch. I refer anyone signing that to the power of denial.
> Have you stopped beating your wife?



Yes. She beats me at Scrabble, whist, cow racing...

Cheers,
Luke


--
Red Rose Ramblings, the diary of an Essex boy in
exile in Lancashire <http://www.shrimper.org.uk>