Helmets

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Peter Taylor, Feb 4, 2004.

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  1. Peter Taylor

    Peter Taylor Guest

    I think I am missing something (brain, probably) in this debate about helmets.

    Frankly, I really don't give a toss whether helmet wearing is compulsory or voluntary - after two
    or three instances where wearing a helmet has saved me from a premature (in my opinion, others may
    beg to differ) end, I simply would not dream of cycling without one. And I would not let my kids do
    so either.

    And anyone who would serious consider riding on or off road without one needs their head examining
    (and probably will, by a medic if lucky, or a pathologist if not) It is a basic, sensible
    precaution.

    I understand the arguments about personal freedom of choice - but anyone with the time and energy on
    their hands to get exercised about this could find many other, more pressing issues to get their
    teeth into.

    Rant over chaps, as you were!

    Peter Taylor
     
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  2. David Martin

    David Martin Guest

    On 4/2/04 5:13 pm, in article [email protected], "Peter
    Taylor" <[email protected]> wrote:

    > I think I am missing something (brain, probably) in this debate about helmets.

    A grasp of statistics perhaps?

    > And anyone who would serious consider riding on or off road without one needs their head examining
    > (and probably will, by a medic if lucky, or a pathologist if not) It is a basic, sensible
    > precaution.

    As is wearing one when you walk along the street, harness and ropes when climbing a ladder or the
    stairs. Fireproof suit and helmet when driving a car.

    It is not about whether there is no danger, it is about relative danger. I wear one when riding off
    road where I am more likely tohave a fall (and such a fall is likely to be ameliorated by a helmet).

    I don't wear one on the road because the chance of me having an accident are slim, the chance of
    injury in such an accident even slimmer, and the speed at which I would have such an accident into
    the range where helmets will probably not help but could potentially exacerbate an injury.

    Add to that the inconvenience of having to sort separate headgear, put the thing somewhere when I am
    shopping etc.

    I presume you carry a lightning conductor around with you. About the same number of people die
    solely from preventable head injuries when cycling as are struck by lighning each year in UK (a
    small number between 1 and ten).

    ..d
     
  3. Peter Taylor wrote:
    > I think I am missing something (brain, probably) in this debate about helmets.

    So do I.
     
  4. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    "Peter Taylor" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > I think I am missing something (brain, probably) in this debate about helmets.

    Yup :) An understanding of the counter-intuitive issues.

    > And anyone who would serious consider riding on or off road without one needs their head examining
    > (and probably will, by a medic if lucky, or a pathologist if not) It is a basic, sensible
    > precaution.

    Part of your problem lies here : the answer is not "probably". In fact it's reasonably unlikely.
    Millions of riders around the world manage to demonstrate this.

    I assume you've read the core facts in the various discussions :

    1) Helmets ought to make you safer in the event of a collision
    2) Studies of head injuries show that the number of them doesn't seem to be related to the
    proportion of people wearing helmets at all.

    Now isn't that a bit strange? Fact 2 seems to imply fact 1 isn't true. Fact 2 also seems to imply
    that wearing a helmet isn't the 'basic, sensible precaution' you say.

    So, how do you reconcile these two facts?

    clive
     
  5. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    "Peter Taylor" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...

    > I think I am missing something (brain, probably) in this debate about helmets.

    You said it :)

    > Frankly, I really don't give a toss whether helmet wearing is compulsory
    or
    > voluntary

    Because, presumably, you don't care if a third of cyclists simply stop riding.

    >- after two or three instances where wearing a helmet has saved me
    > from a premature (in my opinion, others may beg to differ) end

    Or not, it might have been the Mk. 1 Skull which has been protecting cyclists since before they were
    cyclists...

    > I understand the arguments about personal freedom of choice - but anyone with the time and energy
    > on their hands to get exercised about this could find many other, more pressing issues to get
    > their teeth into.

    As far as I'm concerned there is *no* more pressing issue in cycling right now than making sure the
    misguided fools at the DfT don't destroy the green shoots of recovery in UK cycling by introducing a
    law which, everywhere it's been tried, has had no effect on injury rates and caused a massive
    reduction in cycling.

    --
    Guy
    ===

    WARNING: may contain traces of irony. Contents may settle after posting.
    http://www.chapmancentral.co.uk
     
  6. Peter B

    Peter B Guest

  7. Simon Brooke

    Simon Brooke Guest

    "Peter Taylor" <[email protected]> writes:

    > I think I am missing something (brain, probably) in this debate about helmets.

    You certainly are. Why do we have to re-open this time after time? The research has been done, the
    verdict is in. Increased helmet wearing does not make any measurable difference to serious injuries
    and deaths in whole population studies. Consequently *if* - as I believe - helmets do save some
    lives that would otherwise have been lost in some accidents, they must logically cause at least as
    many deaths where lives would not otherwise have been lost.

    You can't escape that. It's an uncomfortable fact, but it's a fact. You are _exactly_ as likely to
    be killed or seriously injured wearing a helmet as not. You're less likely to have minor cuts and
    bruises, and you may psychologically feel safer. But that's all.

    --
    [email protected] (Simon Brooke) http://www.jasmine.org.uk/~simon/

    See one nuclear war, you've seen them all.
     
  8. Nc

    Nc Guest

    This months Audax magazine carried a small amusing piece...

    According to a Dr Palmer, of the west of England, the most common sporting head injury he treats is
    from golf. Now whether this is down to the numbers playing the game, or the inherent risks....

    Legislation for compulsory golf helmets can only be around the corner.

    --
    NC - Webmaster for http://www.2mm.org.uk/ Replies to newsgroup postings to the newsgroup please.
     
  9. Succorso

    Succorso Guest

    John Hearns wrote:
    > On Wed, 04 Feb 2004 17:13:03 +0000, Peter Taylor wrote:
    >
    >
    >
    >>And anyone who would serious consider riding on or off road without one needs their head examining
    >>(and probably will, by a medic if lucky, or a pathologist if not) It is a basic, sensible
    >>precaution.
    >
    >
    > Oh Lord. YAHH (yet another helmet thread) But I can't help but reply. Sorry. Me, I mostly choose
    > to wear a helmet.
    >
    > But Peter, please go to Holland. Stand on any high street, and start shouting at the shoppers,
    > students, grannies and mums and dads with kids on the crossbar, not a helmet to be seen
    > amongst them.
    >

    True enough, but how much motorised traffic are they cycling amongst?

    --
    Chris
     
  10. NC wrote:

    > This months Audax magazine carried a small amusing piece...
    >
    > According to a Dr Palmer, of the west of England, the most common sporting head injury he treats
    > is from golf. Now whether this is down to the numbers playing the game, or the inherent risks....
    >
    > Legislation for compulsory golf helmets can only be around the corner.
    >
    >
    There is a footpath near us that runs through a golf course. There are (were?) helmets available for
    use by walkers passing through.
     
  11. Mseries

    Mseries Guest

    Peter Taylor wrote:
    > I think I am missing something (brain, probably) in this debate about helmets.
    >
    > Frankly, I really don't give a toss whether helmet wearing is compulsory or voluntary -

    Then why bother posting this diatribe. Back under the bridge.
     
  12. In article <[email protected]>,

    >"Peter Taylor" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    >> I think I am missing something (brain, probably) in this debate about helmets.
    >
    >Yup :) An understanding of the counter-intuitive issues.

    As David Martin points out, one of those counter-intuitive issues is a grasp of elementary
    statistics.

    >> And anyone who would serious consider riding on or off road without one needs their head
    >> examining (and probably will, by a medic if lucky, or a pathologist if not) It is a basic,
    >> sensible precaution.
    >
    >Part of your problem lies here : the answer is not "probably". In fact it's reasonably unlikely.
    >Millions of riders around the world manage to demonstrate this.

    That is true.

    >I assume you've read the core facts in the various discussions :
    >
    >1) Helmets ought to make you safer in the event of a collision

    That is not a fact. The science and evidence is fairly balanced as to whether they are more likely
    to reduce or increase brain damage. We simply don't know which, if either.

    >2) Studies of head injuries show that the number of them doesn't seem to be related to the
    > proportion of people wearing helmets at all.

    That is true.

    >Now isn't that a bit strange? Fact 2 seems to imply fact 1 isn't true. Fact 2 also seems to imply
    >that wearing a helmet isn't the 'basic, sensible precaution' you say.

    Yes.

    >So, how do you reconcile these two facts?

    Divine inspiration. As given to his poodledom, Holy Tony.

    Regards, Nick Maclaren.
     
  13. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    "Nick Maclaren" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...

    > >I assume you've read the core facts in the various discussions :
    > >
    > >1) Helmets ought to make you safer in the event of a collision
    >
    > That is not a fact. The science and evidence is fairly balanced as to whether they are more likely
    > to reduce or increase brain damage. We simply don't know which, if either.

    Note my use of the word 'ought' :)

    cheers, clive
     
  14. Andyp

    Andyp Guest

    "MSeries" <[email protected]> wrote

    > > Frankly, I really don't give a toss whether helmet wearing is compulsory or voluntary -

    > Then why bother posting this diatribe. Back under the bridge.

    Keeps people off the streets.
     
  15. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On Wed, 04 Feb 2004 19:05:03 GMT, Simon Brooke <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    >Consequently *if* - as I believe - helmets do save some lives that would otherwise have been lost
    >in some accidents, they must logically cause at least as many deaths where lives would not
    >otherwise have been lost.

    Although to be fair Occam's Razor suggests a simpler explanation: they somply don't prevent the most
    serious injuries.

    Guy
    ===
    May contain traces of irony. Contents liable to settle after posting.
    http://chapmancentral.demon.co.uk
     
  16. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On Wed, 4 Feb 2004 20:01:57 -0000, "NC" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >According to a Dr Palmer, of the west of England, the most common sporting head injury he treats is
    >from golf. Now whether this is down to the numbers playing the game, or the inherent risks....

    Note to self: remove flag from 'bent when riding past walkspoiling courses ;-)

    Guy
    ===
    May contain traces of irony. Contents liable to settle after posting.
    http://chapmancentral.demon.co.uk
     
  17. Gonzalez

    Gonzalez Guest

    On Wed, 4 Feb 2004 18:26:49 -0000, "Just zis Guy, you know?"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Or not, it might have been the Mk. 1 Skull which has been protecting cyclists since before they
    >were cyclists...

    It can't do any harm in giving the Mk. 1 Skull a helping hand (or skull in this case).
     
  18. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On Wed, 04 Feb 2004 23:20:19 +0000, Gonzalez
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >>Or not, it might have been the Mk. 1 Skull which has been protecting cyclists since before they
    >>were cyclists...

    >It can't do any harm in giving the Mk. 1 Skull a helping hand (or skull in this case).

    Unless it makes rotational injuries worse, or induces risk compensation, in which case it can.

    Guy
    ===
    May contain traces of irony. Contents liable to settle after posting.
    http://chapmancentral.demon.co.uk
     
  19. RogerDodger

    RogerDodger New Member

    Joined:
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    Trolled again! No problem - it's such a good opportunity to provide the information-antidote to the helmet delusion.

    Perhaps the term 'troll' could be replaced (when the subject is helmets) with a better description - how about 'true believer'
    (Gonzalez - where are you?)

    Roger

    "A man is likely to mind his own business when it is worth minding. When it is not, he takes his mind off his own meaningless affairs by minding other people's business."

    "It is the true believer’s ability to shut his eyes and stop his ears to facts which in his own mind deserve never to be seen nor heard which is the source of his unequalled fortitude and consistency."
    - Eric Hoffer (Author of “The True Believer”)
     
  20. Dave Kahn

    Dave Kahn Guest

    "MSeries" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > Peter Taylor wrote:

    > > Frankly, I really don't give a toss whether helmet wearing is compulsory or voluntary -
    >
    > Then why bother posting this diatribe. Back under the bridge.

    He does appear to have trolled successfully in URC before. See
    http://makeashorterlink.com/?O14652E47 .

    Full URL = http://groups.google.co.uk/groups?hl=en&lr=&ie=UTF-
    hreadm=bh89tq%24bpq%241%40hercules.btinternet.com&rnum=10&prev=/groups%3Fhl%3Den%26lr%3D%26ie%3DUTF-
    8%26q%3Dauthor:peter%2540fponline.co.uk%2B

    --
    Dave...
     
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