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Old 11-16-04, 09:15 AM   #1
closetbiker
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helmets for Aus cowboys!

After so much sucess with the bicycle helmet law down under, it looks as if it's starting to spead to others who may benefit from them too! Hopefully, drivers and pedestrians are next!


Hold onto your hat for Outback, Jack! Tie me helmet down
Tuesday, November 16, 2004
Rod McGuirk
Associated Press

Canberra, Australia- The sweat-stained felt hats worn by Australian cowboys, as much a part of the Outback as kangaroos and sun-baked soil, may be heading for the history books. They fail modern industrial safety standards.

It all stems from the death of a cowboy, who suffered head injuries after being trampled in a fall from a horse while mustering bulls in July 2001. His sole protection was the tattered hat that was provided to him for shading from the sun.

The New South Wales state government brought charges against the ranch owner, who employed Daniel Croker, 23. The company was convicted and fined $72,000 last month for breaches of safety, including failure to provide the horseman with an equestrian helmet.

Ranch manager Nicholas Ennis told investigators he knew of no ranch in Australia that made cowboys wear helmets, except while mustering on motorbikes.

Since the death at the ranch in Merriwagga, about 300 miles west of Sydney, helmets have become compulsory for working in the saddle there, but ranchers are calling for industrial laws to be changed to reflect the differences between working in the Outback and in a city factory.

Mal Peters, president of the New South Wales Farmers' Association, warned that substituting helmets for broad-brimmed hats would increase the hazards of skin cancer and heat stroke.

He said there is no helmet a farmer can use when the temperature reaches 113 degrees. "For a farmer who's mustering a mob of sheep, moving very slowly behind them without any air circulation, he or his employee may be subject to heat stroke," Peters said.
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Old 11-16-04, 06:24 PM   #2
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You can buy helmets shaped as a typical American cowboy hat in the US.
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Old 11-16-04, 07:26 PM   #3
Allister
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Mal Peters, president of the New South Wales Farmers' Association, warned that substituting helmets for broad-brimmed hats would increase the hazards of skin cancer and heat stroke.
Construction workers here in Brisbane have cloth brims that fit over a standard construction hardhat. Why can't they make something similar? Necessity being the mother of invention and all.

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He said there is no helmet a farmer can use when the temperature reaches 113 degrees. "For a farmer who's mustering a mob of sheep, moving very slowly behind them without any air circulation, he or his employee may be subject to heat stroke," Peters said.
A properly designed helmet isn't going to be significantly hotter than a felt hat. There's much less ventilation in an Akubrra than in a Giro.

Sounds like the station owners are just being resistant to change. Understandable, but futile.

Personally, I reckon that if you fall from a horse and land on your head, the chance of a snapped neck is at least equal to that of a cracked skull, and no helmet will protect you from that. Also changing or adding a whole law seems like a bit of an overreaction for one incident, considering the millions of manhours that passed by quite safely, but then, helmet laws and rationality rarely mix.

BTW. We don't have any cowboys down here. They're called Jackaroos
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Old 11-16-04, 07:43 PM   #4
LittleBigMan
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Originally Posted by Allister
....changing or adding a whole law seems like a bit of an overreaction for one incident, considering the millions of manhours that passed by quite safely, but then, helmet laws and rationality rarely mix.
Following the same "rationality," all motorists should wear helmets and drive armored vehicles.

Perhaps it's the fear of lawsuits that drives this insanity? Here in the U.S., it's not uncommon to see a warning on a cup of coffee that let's the drinker know that the "contents are hot," maybe thanks in part to a successful, well-pulicized lawsuit filed by a woman who was scorched by McDonald's coffee--not to downplay the trauma of her ordeal, but it's the fear-factor I'm trying to point out.
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Old 11-16-04, 08:44 PM   #5
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He was trampled while mustering bulls. This is like newspaper reports of cyclists killed when hit by a speeding SUV - ". . . . the cyclist wasnt wearing a helmet"
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