My contribution to the no comp. helmets campaign - Esp. suited for MPs

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Peter Fox, Jan 23, 2004.

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  1. davebee

    davebee New Member

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    Bah! I don't like mudguards. Always get caught up in sticks and other crap as soon as I go offroad. its bad enough changing from slicks for road riding to treads for off-roading.....
     


  2. Graeme

    Graeme Guest

    Pip <[email protected]> wrote in
    news:[email protected]:

    > I wish the compulsory use of helmets for motorbikes would go as well: I was so looking forward
    > to riding on a motorbike along the coast of North West Wales - the quiet roads, of course.
    > Anyone deciding to take that route should, of course, be willing to be low on the list of
    > hospital treatment for head injury. But it should be their choice: they don't hurt anyone else
    > by making it.

    They're probably less likely to hurt anyone else if they're not wearing a helmet as they won't be
    taking greater risks due to the perceived safety induced by wearing a helmet.

    Cheers,

    Graeme
     
  3. "Spencer Bullen" <[email protected]> wrote:

    | Greetings,
    |
    | personally, since I have been regularly commuting through London traffic for the past 5 years or
    | so, I have always worn a helmet. I've been wiped out twice by cagers, and on each occasion (both
    | times over the handlebars) I am confident that a helmet has saved me from more serious injury.

    Do you think either incident would have happened if cagers routinely thought they might be
    endangering other people's lives?

    --
    Patrick Herring, Sheffield, UK http://www.anweald.co.uk

    Eala Earendel engla beorhtast ofer middangeard monnum sended.
     
  4. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Fri, 23 Jan 2004 22:41:08 -0000 someone who may be "Spencer
    Bullen" <[email protected]> wrote this:-

    >I am confident that a helmet has saved me from more serious injury.

    Your intuition is not a particularly good basis for making anything compulsory.

    Others have had crashes without a helmet, does this mean that their cloth cap, or lucky rabbit's
    foot, saved them from more serious injury?

    --
    David Hansen, Edinburgh | PGP email preferred-key number F566DA0E I will always explain revoked
    keys, unless the UK government prevents me using the RIP Act 2000.
     
  5. Tony Raven

    Tony Raven Guest

    Spencer Bullen wrote:
    >
    > Whilst, as a police officer myself, I feel that ticketing cyclists for a lack of helmets would be
    > a waste of time and resources, I feel the rabid hatred of helmets displayed by some posters to
    > this NG is wrong, and the encouragement of safe cycling should include a push for all to wear
    > helmets.
    >

    Please try not to confuse anti-compulsion with anti helmet. They are not the same thing. Most
    people here are rabidly against compulsion because it leads to less people cycling. Many of those
    are pro-helmets.

    Tony
     
  6. waffle

    waffle New Member

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    go ahead, do what you like - don't wear a helmet. Just don't expect the Joe Taxpayer to foot the bill when your lying in bed for x-months with a cracked melon. Better still - come down to Sydney Australia where I live - see how long you last not wearing a helmet. a little pragmatism, perhaps.
     
  7. David Martin

    David Martin Guest

    On 26/1/04 11:54 am, in article [email protected],
    "waffle" <[email protected]> wrote:

    > go ahead, do what you like - don't wear a helmet. Just don't expect the Joe Taxpayer to foot the
    > bill when your lying in bed for x-months with a cracked melon.
    I eat cracked melons. They make a great fruit salad.

    If you are talking about skulls, why should joe taxpayer pay for any injuries that might possibly
    have been avoided given appropriate safety equipment (harness, ropes and helmets for climbing
    stairs, full body armour for pedestrians etc.)

    > Better still - come down to Sydney Australia where I live - see how long you last not wearing a
    > helmet. a little pragmatism, perhaps.

    Probably as long as I would with. A little understanding of the issues goes a long way to not
    looking like a reactionary fool in this newsgroup.

    ..d
     
  8. "David Hansen" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > On Fri, 23 Jan 2004 22:41:08 -0000 someone who may be "Spencer Bullen"
    > <[email protected]> wrote this:-
    >
    > >I am confident that a helmet has saved me from more serious injury.
    >
    > Your intuition is not a particularly good basis for making anything compulsory.
    >
    > Others have had crashes without a helmet, does this mean that their cloth cap, or lucky rabbit's
    > foot, saved them from more serious injury?

    We had a chap at the Bristol cycle forum, who was rabidy pro-helmet, demanding that all cyclists
    wear them and that we should support compulsion. His grounds for doing so were that he had fallen
    off his bike at 30+ and had survived. His case became somewhat questionable when he admitted that he
    wasn't actually wearing a helmet at the time! Whatever else you can accuse the helmet zealots of,
    logic isn't one of them.
    >
    >
    > --
    > David Hansen, Edinburgh | PGP email preferred-key number F566DA0E I will always explain revoked
    > keys, unless the UK government prevents me using the RIP Act 2000.
     
  9. waffle <[email protected]> writes:

    >go ahead, do what you like - don't wear a helmet. Just don't expect the Joe Taxpayer to foot the
    >bill when your lying in bed for x-months with a cracked melon. Better still - come down to Sydney
    >Australia where I live - see how long you last not wearing a helmet. a little pragmatism, perhaps.

    I see you're not familiar with even your own bicycle accident statistics.

    --
    Chris Malcolm [email protected] +44 (0)131 651 3445 DoD #205
    IPAB, Informatics, JCMB, King's Buildings, Edinburgh, EH9 3JZ, UK
    [http://www.dai.ed.ac.uk/homes/cam/]
     
  10. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Mon, 26 Jan 2004 11:54:30 GMT someone who may be waffle
    <[email protected]> wrote this:-

    >Just don't expect the Joe Taxpayer to foot the bill when your lying in bed for x-months with a
    >cracked melon.

    They seem happy to pay when pedestrians and car occupants crack their heads in crashes. In both
    absolute and relative terms there are more cracked heads amongst these groups than cyclists, why
    single out cyclists?

    --
    David Hansen, Edinburgh | PGP email preferred-key number F566DA0E I will always explain revoked
    keys, unless the UK government prevents me using the RIP Act 2000.
     
  11. J-P.S

    J-P.S Guest

    On Mon, 26 Jan 2004 13:07:46 -0000, Richard Burton scrawled: ) Whatever else you can accuse the
    helmet zealots of, logic isn't one of ) them.

    This is true for zealots of all colours: I assume by adjectivizing "helmet" you are including both
    the pro- and anti-helmet extremists, as they all seem to have a fixation: on the one side, "think of
    the children!"; on the other, "those gullible fools who are not as clear-headed as I!" Whereas pro-
    helmet zealots provide arguments based on "common sense" (the last resort of those who have no other
    kind), anti-helmet zealots cite things like risk homeostasis that they can't necessarily expand upon
    a practical situation, and cannot provide a convincing mechanism that is also able to explain why
    the phenomenon does not always maintain the statistical status quo. That they cannot provide one is
    no sin; that they act like the Damerell in the absence of one, is.

    In the end, because of the inadequacy of the statistics to provide convincing proof behind any of
    the reasons why helmets do not change the accident statistics of the population as a whole, we are
    all required to make value judgments based on scant evidence.

    Those who scorn anecdotal evidence do so at their peril, because none of us is Everycyclist, and it
    is not clear from the more apparently scientific studies how helmet use affects each particular
    demographic of cyclist. A compromise is required by each individual, using their own judgment to
    place them somewhere on the axis of being safe, feeling safe, and being complacent.

    The most conclusive point I have been able to glean from the usual citations is that how a cyclist
    feels on a bike is more important than the safety measures themselves. Cyclists are statistically
    safest in numbers, and whatever happens to helmet usage then it must appeal to those demographics
    who would not cycle without them, without turning off those who would not be seen, er, dead in them.
    Of course, if compulsory helmet use removed predominantly boy racers from the cycling population
    then I'd be all for it.

    (I suppose one might feel complacent without being complacent. I hadn't thought of it before now.
    Now I've thought of it, can I think of something else? ... Lovely, thanks.)

    For the record: based on my own cycling style, and accidents experienced by myself plus others with
    similar cycling style, I am pro-helmet. I find it hard to be zealous about anything other than the
    elimination of smuggery and mindlessness, though; but if you catch me after my third coffee then you
    may strike gold.

    J-P
    --
    In response, Senate leaders Tom Daschle, Joseph Lieberman, and Bob Graham burst out giggling.
     
  12. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    "j-p.s" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...

    > Those who scorn anecdotal evidence do so at their peril, because none of us is Everycyclist, and
    > it is not clear from the more apparently scientific studies how helmet use affects each particular
    > demographic of cyclist.

    I disagree. Every crash is so different form every other crash that anecdotal evidence is
    necessarily not to be trusted. I know of two seventy-year-olds both of whom crashed in superficially
    similar circumstances, header over the bars following a pothole strike. The one wearing a helmet
    died (some days later, apparently of SDH), the one not wearing a helmet survived with some cuts and
    a nasty headache. But.... they were only superficially similar. Nobody measured the exact speed, for
    example. The weakness of anecdotal evidence - apart from the fact that most of it is "helmet saved
    my life" stories which attribute survival solely to the plastic hat, and ignore the rather tough
    skull underneath - is that there is never quite enough information to decide wheher any two
    anecdotes are comparable. And nobody ever goes back and tries the crash again.

    For the rest, we agree that it is rightly a matter of personal choice. My view is that one should
    first take care of the really important things like maintenance, roadcraft, conspicuity, and then
    put helmets in their right context as somethign which may prevent an uncomfortable and inconvenient
    injury. If you want to prevent road rash on your head if you should happen to come off, I for one
    would call that a smart move.

    --
    Guy
    ===

    WARNING: may contain traces of irony. Contents may settle after posting.
    http://chapmancentral.demon.co.uk
     
  13. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

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

    > go ahead, do what you like - don't wear a helmet. Just don't expect the Joe Taxpayer to foot the
    > bill when your lying in bed for x-months with a cracked melon. Better still - come down to Sydney
    > Australia where I live - see how long you last not wearing a helmet. a little pragmatism, perhaps.

    Would that be the same Sydney, Australia, where the mandatory helmet law resulted in a one third
    reduction in head injuries? And a one third reduction in cycling? Leaving the head injury rate
    unchanged? The one where some doctors are now asking for a repeal of the law because it is a public
    health own-goal? That Sydney, Australia?

    --
    Guy
    ===

    WARNING: may contain traces of irony. Contents may settle after posting.
    http://chapmancentral.demon.co.uk
     
  14. J-P.S

    J-P.S Guest

    On Mon, 26 Jan 2004 17:50:36 -0000, Just zis Guy, you know? scrawled: ) "j-p.s"
    <[email protected]> wrote in message )
    news:[email protected]... ) )> Those who scorn anecdotal evidence do so
    at their peril, because none of )> us is Everycyclist, and it is not clear from the more apparently
    )> scientific studies how helmet use affects each particular demographic of )> cyclist. ) ) I
    disagree. Every crash is so different form every other crash that ) anecdotal evidence is
    necessarily not to be trusted.

    Absolutely. It's not clear how that's a disagreement, mind. Nor is it a criticism that can't be
    levelled at statistical evidence, yet I wouldn't dismiss statistics because they average over these
    ornate snowflake crashes; nor would I dismiss anecdotes because they don't.

    J-P
    --
    Well they're going to build a monument Out on the motorway Because they can't decide exactly what
    links it to Shelley
     
  15. waffle

    waffle New Member

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    Would that be the same Sydney, Australia, where the mandatory helmet law resulted in a one third
    reduction in head injuries? And a one third reduction in cycling? Leaving the head injury rate
    unchanged? The one where some doctors are now asking for a repeal of the law because it is a public
    health own-goal? That Sydney, Australia?


    A one-third reduction in cyclists? Gee, a bet that's a reliable statistic. what, was somebody counting the number of cyclists crossing the bridge pre and post introduction of the law. and for what reason was there such a dramatic reduction in the number of cyclists? Vanity?? give me a break. the general perception amongst australian cyclists regarding helmets (at least in sydney, anyway) is that it's just something you do (much like putting on a seat belt in a car) because the safety benefits of doing so are common sense.
     
  16. Peter Clinch

    Peter Clinch Guest

    waffle wrote:

    > A one-third reduction in cyclists? Gee, a bet that's a reliable statistic. what, was somebody
    > counting the number of cyclists crossing the bridge pre and post introduction of the law. and
    > for what reason was there such a dramatic reduction in the number of cyclists? Vanity?? give me
    > a break.

    You should speak to your own government regarding how they gather their statistics, but despite it
    being in their interest to show how effective their helmet law was it was still found to be the
    case. I don't pretend I know *why*, but the important point is that it *is*.

    > the general perception amongst australian cyclists regarding helmets (at least in sydney, anyway)
    > is that it's just something you do (much like putting on a seat belt in a car) because the safety
    > benefits of doing so are common sense.

    I wear gloves to prune my roses: it's common sense. But I don't think it's going to save my life, so
    it would be daft to make it compulsory. If "common sense" is all there is to it there's nothing to
    fear from not having the law, since people will wear them anyway.

    Pete.
    --
    Peter Clinch University of Dundee Tel 44 1382 660111 ext. 33637 Medical Physics, Ninewells Hospital
    Fax 44 1382 640177 Dundee DD1 9SY Scotland UK net [email protected]
    http://www.dundee.ac.uk/~pjclinch/
     
  17. On Tue, 27 Jan 2004 09:57:00 +0000, Peter Clinch <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    > waffle wrote:
    >
    >> the general perception amongst australian cyclists regarding helmets (at least in sydney, anyway)
    >> is that it's just something you do (much like putting on a seat belt in a car) because the safety
    >> benefits of doing so are common sense.
    >
    > I wear gloves to prune my roses: it's common sense. But I don't think it's going to save my life,
    > so it would be daft to make it compulsory. If "common sense" is all there is to it there's nothing
    > to fear from not having the law, since people will wear them anyway.

    And also the sample has now been self-selected to some extent. It is the general perception amongst
    cyclists because those who have continued to cycle are those who either already wore helemts or were
    prepared to wear helmets.

    Colin
    --
     
  18. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

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

    > A one-third reduction in cyclists? Gee, a bet that's a reliable statistic. what, was somebody
    > counting the number of cyclists crossing the bridge pre and post introduction of the law.

    Yes. Surveys were done.

    > and for what reason was there such a dramatic reduction in the number of cyclists? Vanity??

    Possibly, possibly the fact that an additional barrier exists which did not exist before, but
    interview evidence with 14-year-olds, for example, showed among those who had stopped cycling a
    common reason was that helmets were uncool.

    > give me a break. the general perception amongst australian cyclists regarding helmets (at least in
    > sydney, anyway) is that it's just something you do (much like putting on a seat belt in a car)
    > because the safety benefits of doing so are common sense.

    Or, in the case of a third of cyclists, it's something you don't do, along with getting on
    your bike.

    See http://www.cyclehelmets.org for more data.

    --
    Guy
    ===

    WARNING: may contain traces of irony. Contents may settle after posting.
    http://chapmancentral.demon.co.uk
     
  19. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    "Colin Blackburn" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:eek:[email protected]...

    > And also the sample has now been self-selected to some extent. It is the general perception
    > amongst cyclists because those who have continued to cycle are those who either already wore
    > helemts or were prepared to wear helmets.

    Hmmm. Given that the head injury rate is the same, that might be taken as indicating that the safest
    cyclists are those who refuse to wear helmets.

    --
    Guy
    ===

    WARNING: may contain traces of irony. Contents may settle after posting.
    http://chapmancentral.demon.co.uk
     
  20. waffle

    waffle New Member

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    "If "common sense" is all there is to it there's nothing to
    fear from not having the law, since people will wear "

    A bit optimistic, isn't it? Let's get real!
    Your missing the point i alluded to in my first post - that of public responsibility in general and Joe Taxpayer be left with the hospital bill specifically.
    The whole objection to helmets (which the vast majority of cyclists in Australia don't have) appears to stem purely from vanity as far as i can tell. what a flippin joke.
     
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