Oh not again!

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Davidr, Dec 18, 2003.

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  1. Davidr

    Davidr Guest

    A report in the Reading Chronicle on December 11 reported thus:

    New Lib Dem district group chairman David Hare had a close shave when he was struck by a car and
    hurled into the air as he cycled through Earley.

    He was pedalling home from a district council meeting at around 9pm on November 25 when the accident
    happened at the Carshalton Way-Cutbush Lane roundabout.

    Cllr Hare, 45, said "I was thrown into the air; bounced off the car bonnet and smashed through the
    windscreen, before being thrown to the road.

    "I knew my leg was badly broken; but it could have been much worse. Many people have said if I
    hadn't been wearing my cycle helmet I would not have survived."

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Small mercy it wasn't reported as "cyclist in collision with car" I suppose.
     
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  2. Steve R.

    Steve R. Guest

    DavidR wrote in message ...
    > A report in the Reading Chronicle on December 11 reported thus: New Lib Dem district group
    > chairman David Hare had a close shave when he
    was
    > struck by a car and hurled into the air as he cycled through Earley.

    > Oh not again!

    Why?

    Did he have an accident at exactly the same spot on a previous occasion ?
     
  3. Andy

    Andy Guest

    "DavidR" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    >. Many people have said if I hadn't been wearing my cycle helmet I would not have survived."
    >

    Sounds like they could be right to me.
     
  4. "DavidR" <[email protected]> wrote:

    | A report in the Reading Chronicle on December 11 reported thus:
    |
    |
    | New Lib Dem district group chairman David Hare had a close shave when he was struck by a car and
    | hurled into the air as he cycled through Earley.
    |
    | He was pedalling home from a district council meeting at around 9pm on November 25 when the
    | accident happened at the Carshalton Way-Cutbush Lane roundabout.
    |
    | Cllr Hare, 45, said "I was thrown into the air; bounced off the car bonnet and smashed through the
    | windscreen, before being thrown to the road.
    |
    | "I knew my leg was badly broken; but it could have been much worse. Many people have said if I
    | hadn't been wearing my cycle helmet I would not have survived."

    & if he hadn't been wearing any clothes the driver might have noticed him in time to avoid the
    collision. Not that I'm proposing to test this theory, it's brass monkeys out there, which is
    another theory that might come into play...

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

    \ Dave Guest

    "Steve R." <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > DavidR wrote in message ...
    > > A report in the Reading Chronicle on December 11 reported thus: New Lib Dem district group
    > > chairman David Hare had a close shave when he
    > was
    > > struck by a car and hurled into the air as he cycled through Earley.
    >
    > > Oh not again!
    >
    > Why?
    >
    > Did he have an accident at exactly the same spot on a previous occasion ?
    >
    >

    Yes....and he wasn't wearing a helmet that time....and he died!!!...proof positive, at
    last ;-) Dave.
     
  6. Simon Brooke

    Simon Brooke Guest

    "Andy" <[email protected]> writes:

    > "DavidR" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > >. Many people have said if I hadn't been wearing my cycle helmet I would not have survived."
    >
    > Sounds like they could be right to me.

    Look, let's put this one to bed, shall we? A bicycle helmet is tested for impact of a 5Kg mass up to
    twelve miles per hour. Your body weighs very substantially in excess of 5Kg, but we'll ignore that
    for now. The force of an impact increases with the square of the speed. So an impact with a closing
    speed of 24 miles per hour generates at least 4 times as much force as the helmet can absorb,
    passing at least three times as much force as a helmet can absorb on to the skull. An impact with a
    closing speed of 36 miles an hour generates at least 9 times as much force as the helmet can absorb,
    passing at least eight times as much onto the skull.

    But look at it another way, an impact with a closing speed of 24 miles per hour with helmet is
    equivalent to an impact of
    20.78 miles per hour without helmet - just 3.2mph different. An impact with a closing speed of 36mph
    with helmet is equivalent to an impact of 33.95mph without helmet - just 2.05mph different.

    And that's before we start looking at the increased rotational injuries which helmets may cause.

    In low speed single-vehicle accidents helmets may make some difference to probability of injury. In
    collisions with motor vehicles moving in the same direction at normal urban traffic speeds that
    difference is at best vanishingly slight. In head-on conditions or in traffic travelling at extra
    urban speeds, it's an irrelevence.

    This isn't guesswork, it isn't possibly dodgy statistical studies, it's just basic O level Newtonian
    physics. E=MV^2, and no amount of faith in polystyrene beenies is going to change that.

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

    ;; MS Windows: A thirty-two bit extension ... to a sixteen bit ;; patch to an eight bit
    operating system originally coded for a ;; four bit microprocessor and sold by a two-bit company
    that ;; can't stand one bit of competition -- anonymous
     
  7. Congokid

    Congokid Guest

    In message <[email protected]>, DavidR <[email protected]> writes

    >"I knew my leg was badly broken; but it could have been much worse. Many people have said if I
    >hadn't been wearing my cycle helmet I would not have survived."

    I wonder why, as the news report doesn't mention any injury to his head.

    --
    congokid Good restaurants in London? Number one on Google http://congokid.com
     
  8. DavidR wrote:

    > Cllr Hare, 45, said "I was thrown into the air; bounced off the car bonnet and smashed through the
    > windscreen, before being thrown to the road.
    >
    > "I knew my leg was badly broken; but it could have been much worse. Many people have said if I
    > hadn't been wearing my cycle helmet I would not have survived."

    Yeah, those helmets are brilliant for minimising the effect of leg injuries.
     
  9. Steve R.

    Steve R. Guest

    congokid wrote in message ...
    > I wonder why, as the news report doesn't mention any injury to his head.

    He had no injury to his head BECAUSE he was wearing a helmet :~) That's why there was no report of a
    head-injury :~)

    It's obvious innit ?

    Steve.
     
  10. Steve R.

    Steve R. Guest

    Simon Brooke wrote in message ...
    > A bicycle helmet is tested for impact of a 5Kg mass up to twelve miles per hour ... Blah Blah Blah

    You can theorise all you like, but any form of head protection, even a baseball cap, will reduce
    certain types of injury. It's pretty obvious that the thicker and more absorbent to energy
    dissipation headwear is, the better it will protect your head in ANY accident where the head comes
    into contact with another hardish interface (cupboard door, partner's head, lampost, whatever),

    Anything to stop your skull being deformed LESS THAN it would otherwise be has got to be a benefit,
    whether it's a direct impact, a glancing blow or abrasion. No helmet is perfect, even a £600
    motorcycle helmet, but it's a well-logged fact that motorcycle helmets have considerably reduced
    head and facial injuries in accidents since they well made a legal requirement to wear, and so have
    many cycle helmets in recorded incidents reduced the trauma that would otherwise have been caused.

    I really don't know why some of you guys have to whinge so much when people claim they have saved
    their lives or reduced head-injuries, when is so obvious that wearing even a low-cost helmet is
    better than wearing none at all.

    Steve :~)
     
  11. Andy

    Andy Guest

    "Simon Brooke" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > "Andy" <[email protected]> writes:
    >
    > > "DavidR" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > > news:[email protected]...
    > > >. Many people have said if I hadn't been wearing my cycle helmet I would not have survived."
    > >
    > > Sounds like they could be right to me.
    >
    > Look, let's put this one to bed, shall we? A bicycle helmet is tested for impact of a 5Kg mass up
    > to twelve miles per hour. Your body weighs very substantially in excess of 5Kg, but we'll ignore
    > that for now. The force of an impact increases with the square of the speed. So an impact with a
    > closing speed of 24 miles per hour generates at least 4 times as much force as the helmet can
    > absorb, passing at least three times as much force as a helmet can absorb on to the skull. An
    > impact with a closing speed of 36 miles an hour generates at least 9 times as much force as the
    > helmet can absorb, passing at least eight times as much onto the skull.
    >

    Interesting, so all bike accidents are "X" mph -> zero then ? Glancing blows on say tarmac
    never happen ?
     
  12. Steve R. wrote:

    > it's a well-logged fact that motorcycle helmets have considerably reduced head and facial injuries
    > in accidents since they well made a legal requirement to wear

    Have they? Or was it just that everyone stopped riding motorbikes? Anyone got a link to the stats?
     
  13. Mseries

    Mseries Guest

    Steve R. wrote:

    > motorcycle helmet, but it's a well-logged fact that motorcycle helmets have considerably reduced
    > head and facial injuries in accidents since they well made a legal requirement to wear,

    yet in places where cycle helmets have been made mandatory this is not the case.

    and so
    > have many cycle helmets in recorded incidents reduced the trauma that would otherwise have
    > been caused.
     
  14. Simon Brooke

    Simon Brooke Guest

    "Steve R." <[email protected]> writes:

    > Simon Brooke wrote in message ...
    > > A bicycle helmet is tested for impact of a 5Kg mass up to twelve miles per hour ... Blah
    > > Blah Blah

    [snip]

    > I really don't know why some of you guys have to whinge so much when people claim they have saved
    > their lives or reduced head-injuries, when is so obvious that wearing even a low-cost helmet is
    > better than wearing none at all.

    If you dive head first off the ten metre board, 1 cm of water in the bottom of the pool is better
    than none at all; just not much better. Yes, of course bicycle helmets offer _some_ protection if
    you hit something square on - just pathetically little, nothing like enough to make any useful
    difference. If you don't hit square on, the increased radius of your head means increased torque
    leading to worse rotational injuries - the ones which cause brain damage. So you're trading
    fractionally better safety in a head on impaft for somewhat more danger in a glancing impact.

    Motorcycle helmets are another thing altogether. They're very much stronger. They still aren't
    guaranteed to save your life, but at least they have a fighting chance. And they don't solve the
    rotational injury problem.

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

    ;; Women are from Venus. Men are from Mars. Lusers are from Uranus.
     
  15. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Fri, 19 Dec 2003 17:19:53 GMT someone who may be "Steve R."
    <[email protected]> wrote this:-

    >it's a well-logged fact that motorcycle helmets have considerably reduced head and facial injuries
    >in accidents since they well made a legal requirement to wear,

    I suggest you study "Death on the Streets: Cars and the Mythology of Road Safety" for a discussion
    of this. In particular the effect of the law on those not on motorbikes.

    >and so have many cycle helmets in recorded incidents reduced the trauma that would otherwise have
    >been caused.

    Perhaps you would like to stage the crash again, so that a valid comparison could be made. Without
    such tests one can "prove" all sorts of things, such as helmets preventing as many knee injuries as
    they do head injuries.

    >is so obvious that wearing even a low-cost helmet is better than wearing none at all.

    Many things are "obvious", but that does not mean that they are correct. Optical illusions do exist
    and so do other illusions.

    --
    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.
     
  16. Simon Brooke

    Simon Brooke Guest

    "Andy" <[email protected]> writes:

    > "Simon Brooke" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]...
    > > "Andy" <[email protected]> writes:
    > >
    > > > "DavidR" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > > > news:[email protected]...
    > > > >. Many people have said if I hadn't been wearing my cycle helmet I would not have survived."
    > > >
    > > > Sounds like they could be right to me.
    > >
    > > Look, let's put this one to bed, shall we? A bicycle helmet is tested for impact of a 5Kg mass
    > > up to twelve miles per hour. Your body weighs very substantially in excess of 5Kg, but we'll
    > > ignore that for now. The force of an impact increases with the square of the speed. So an impact
    > > with a closing speed of 24 miles per hour generates at least 4 times as much force as the helmet
    > > can absorb, passing at least three times as much force as a helmet can absorb on to the skull.
    > > An impact with a closing speed of 36 miles an hour generates at least 9 times as much force as
    > > the helmet can absorb, passing at least eight times as much onto the skull.
    >
    > Interesting, so all bike accidents are "X" mph -> zero then ? Glancing blows on say tarmac never
    > happen ?

    All impacts of any kind whatever have a closing velocity, which can be expressed in miles per hour
    or metres per second or any other units of time and distance you care to mention. This includes
    glancing blows on tarmac. It doesn't make any difference to the physics whether what you hit is
    tarmac or steel - the kinetic energy still has to be dissipated.

    Glancing blows are, of course, the ones which cause rotational acceleration, where a helmeted head
    (because bigger) is accelerated more, and is consequently subject to more brain damage, than an
    unhelmeted one, but the forces which have to be diddipated remain the same.

    My AI .sig generator seems particularly inspired this evening.

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

    ;; Women are from Venus. Men are from Mars. Lusers are from Uranus.
     
  17. Davidr

    Davidr Guest

    "Steve R." <[email protected]> wrote
    > DavidR wrote in message ...

    > > A report in the Reading Chronicle on December 11 reported thus: New Lib Dem district group
    > > chairman David Hare had a close shave when he
    > was
    > > struck by a car and hurled into the air as he cycled through Earley.
    >
    > > Oh not again!
    >
    > Why?

    The mention of the unmentionable in the last paragraph.
     
  18. Howard

    Howard Guest

    > In low speed single-vehicle accidents helmets may make some difference to probability of injury.
    > In collisions with motor vehicles moving in the same direction at normal urban traffic speeds that
    > difference is at best vanishingly slight. In head-on conditions or in traffic travelling at extra
    > urban speeds, it's an irrelevence.
    >
    > This isn't guesswork, it isn't possibly dodgy statistical studies, it's just basic O level
    > Newtonian physics. E=MV^2, and no amount of faith in polystyrene beenies is going to change that.

    Good post, although I understand that the test standard does assume a body weight loading of a
    helmet, even if the weight used in the test rig is less then this. (Which is not to say that the
    testing procedure has any real world validity). Even with a body weight loading what use if this if
    one is hit by a very soild car wight 1000kg?

    Other thoughts, it seems that even assuming that under a high load a helmet will absorb a percentage
    of that load is suspect. At high loads a helmet will probabaly just fail catastrophically.
    Similarly, just think how much energy it takes to squash a piece of foam compared with that to break
    it in half. Most 'my helmet was left in bits' failures show little evidence of having absorbed a
    compressive load. This is not helped by all the vents and so on that encourage the helmet to break
    up - and possibly increase the rotational load which is a primary case of serious brain injury.

    Given the available evidence it seems fair to say that below 20 MPH there is a 95% of surviving a
    crash, above 40 MPH there is a 95% chance of dying. As you show all wearing a helmet does is move
    these boundaries slightly so we can expect the 95% survivability zone to end at 23 mph and the 95%
    fatality zone to start at 41.7 MPH.

    Why is the Government so keen on helmets? Easy. If you are run down and an ambulance attends, and
    you have any form of head injury, you will be taken to hospital. If you attend hospital you will be
    recorded as having aserious injury. This means head injuries are vastly over represented in
    attendances and these distorted stats are then used to justify helmet wearing. Now Central
    Government has set targets to reduce 'serious' injuries. To me this means those leading to long term
    disability, life threatening injuries and so on.

    Now in order to reduce such injuries the most effective action would be to get cars to slow down
    substantially (whatever the arguments might be about crash causation, no one can argue that the
    higher the speed the more serious the consequences of any crash). However, such action is seen as
    being a vote loser. Now here comes the clever bit.

    Many hospital attendances involve cyclists with minor bumps and cuts that could probably be
    prevented by a helmet - and these are recorded as being 'serious' injuries. Voila! get cyclists to
    wear helmets and the rate of 'serious' injuries would fall and targets would be met, even though
    just as many cyclists would be killed and left with genuinely serious injuries as they ever were...

    Of course the other reason helmets are so popular with some is that they assume there will then be
    no need to control the speed of vehicles and so on...
     
  19. Andy

    Andy Guest

    "Simon Brooke" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > "Andy" <[email protected]> writes:
    >
    > > "Simon Brooke" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > > news:[email protected]...
    > > > "Andy" <[email protected]> writes:
    > > >
    > > > > "DavidR" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > > > > news:[email protected]...
    > > > > >. Many people have said if I hadn't been wearing my cycle helmet I would
    not
    > > > > > have survived."
    > > > >
    > > > > Sounds like they could be right to me.
    > > >
    > > > Look, let's put this one to bed, shall we? A bicycle helmet is tested for impact of a 5Kg mass
    > > > up to twelve miles per hour. Your body weighs very substantially in excess of 5Kg, but we'll
    > > > ignore that for now. The force of an impact increases with the square of the speed. So an
    > > > impact with a closing speed of 24 miles per hour generates at least 4 times as much force as
    > > > the helmet can absorb, passing at least three times as much force as a helmet can absorb on to
    > > > the skull. An impact with a closing speed of 36 miles an hour generates at least 9 times as
    > > > much force as the helmet can absorb, passing at least eight times as much onto the skull.
    > >
    > > Interesting, so all bike accidents are "X" mph -> zero then ? Glancing blows on say tarmac never
    > > happen ?
    >
    > All impacts of any kind whatever have a closing velocity, which can be expressed in miles per hour
    > or metres per second or any other units of time and distance you care to mention. This includes
    > glancing blows on tarmac. It doesn't make any difference to the physics whether what you hit is
    > tarmac or steel - the kinetic energy still has to be dissipated.
    >
    > Glancing blows are, of course, the ones which cause rotational acceleration, where a helmeted head
    > (because bigger) is accelerated more, and is consequently subject to more brain damage, than an
    > unhelmeted one, but the forces which have to be diddipated remain the same.

    OK, well I'll continue to wear my helmet and risk rotational consequences and I guess you'll
    continue not to wear one (I'm assuming you don't).

    Everyone's happy!
     
  20. Steve R.

    Steve R. Guest

    David Hansen wrote in message ...
    > such as helmets preventing as many knee injuries as they do head injuries.

    I just don't have the time to counter-argue all the points made in the replies, other than to say in
    professional motorcycle racing the guys wear *expensive* helmets, spine protectors, shoulder
    protectors, knee-pads, elbow-pads etc and it's not uncommon to see them crash at speeds in excess of
    100 mph get flung through the air land on their backs or whatever, then get up and walk away, just
    winded. Sometimes they even try and get back on to race.

    Head-rotational *problems*, although you may be concerned about them just don't even figure in the
    equation. Maybe it's because the helmets are so smooth-surfaced, certainly smoother than a naked
    skull with sticky-out bits like ears and noses.

    Steve.
     
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