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Advocacy & Safety Cyclists should expect and demand safe accommodation on every public road, just as do all other users. Discuss your bicycle advocacy and safety concerns here.

View Poll Results: Helmet wearing habits?
I've never worn a bike helmet 178 10.66%
I used to wear a helmet, but have stopped 94 5.63%
I've always worn a helmet 648 38.80%
I didn't wear a helmet, but now do 408 24.43%
I sometimes wear a helmet depending on the conditions 342 20.48%
Voters: 1670. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 05-28-13, 02:33 PM   #5376
Fiery
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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
This is from a site written by professional risk management scientists and edited by a director of the University of Michigan Risk Science Centre:



I.e.

- If you are wearing a helmet because you think that it reduces your chances of dying in a cycling accident, you are NOT being rational

- If wear a helmet to cycle but not to walk, you are NOT being rational

So why are you wearing a helmet? Either because you didn't know the facts, or because you are scared and the helmet has an irrationally great benefit for you psychologically. The problem with the second is that it indicates you are "risk compensating" - which means that you are taking risks that you wouldn't without the helmet. If you are scared riding in traffic, take a course or read a book like Robert Hursts and learn some survival skills that actually work.
I fall down more often when on a bicycle than when walking (5+ falls cycling vs. 0 falls walking in the last five years or more) and when I fall, I'm more likely to hit my head when falling from a bicycle than when walking. I'm wearing a helmet when cycling because it hurts less when you hit your head while wearing a helmet, and because there's less blood.

And why do I fall more often when cycling? Because I'm taking more risks when cycling than when walking, because I ride bicycles for fun and I walk to get from place A to place B.

So, neither of your presumptions is true, and neither of your conclusions is true. Seems like you didn't really think all this through, did you?
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Old 05-28-13, 02:56 PM   #5377
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I fall down more often when on a bicycle than when walking (5+ falls cycling vs. 0 falls walking in the last five years or more) and when I fall, I'm more likely to hit my head when falling from a bicycle than when walking. I'm wearing a helmet when cycling because it hurts less when you hit your head while wearing a helmet, and because there's less blood.

And why do I fall more often when cycling? Because I'm taking more risks when cycling than when walking, because I ride bicycles for fun and I walk to get from place A to place B.

So, neither of your presumptions is true, and neither of your conclusions is true. Seems like you didn't really think all this through, did you?
That's just not a good enough reason to wear a helmet. What is the matter with you, either it can save your life or it's totally useless and is just for us wussies...
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Old 05-28-13, 03:21 PM   #5378
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No one on this forum appears to be arguing that young children shouldn't wear helmets.
No one on this forum appears to be arguing that anybody shouldn't wear helmets. That there is such an argument being made is only a loony strawman argument of one or two posters on this thread.
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Old 05-28-13, 03:37 PM   #5379
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No one on this forum appears to be arguing that anybody shouldn't wear helmets. That there is such an argument being made is only a loony strawman argument of one or two posters on this thread.
This could be a semantics thing, but when someone posts that wearing a helmet is more dangerous than not wearing one, they kind of are arguing that nobody should wear helmets.
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Old 05-28-13, 03:49 PM   #5380
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No one on this forum appears to be arguing that anybody shouldn't wear helmets. That there is such an argument being made is only a loony strawman argument of one or two posters on this thread.
Beg to differ, I remember being bent over more than a few times by some of the non helmet guys saying that not wearing a helmet is actually safer than wearing a helmet and people shouldn't wear one. It's the main reason I'm still here to try and tell the other side... From post 3722 to 4203 mainly, lately it's been more like it's not worth wearing a helmet because the risk is soo small... Maybe it is, maybe it isn't...
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Old 05-28-13, 04:05 PM   #5381
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I think you all need helmets to protect yourselfs from tumbling over each other.
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Old 05-28-13, 04:21 PM   #5382
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I just got back from a group ride where one of the guys had a pretty bad fall (i'm still in kit as I type this even). I was behind him as we were going downhill on a wet road about 25-30mph. He applied the brakes due to a sharp corner coming up. One of his tires locked up and the bike seemed to jump sideways out from under him.

He slammed to the ground and skidded/rolled pretty darn far. Road rash all over his body, possible broken hip (he is 70 years old but super fit). front left of his helmet was broken. He couldn't remember anyone's names and kept asking to call his wife multiple times after we had already called her (and an ambulance). Definitely he has a concussion. Who knows how bad it would have been without his helmet.

For anyone Oahu local who reads this it was Frank Smith - the owner if Island Triathlon and Bike.

Hope he will check out ok. My training partner is convinced being in good shape and muscle tone mitigated my tumble & injuries and promotes healing though at 58 I heal a tad slower than at 21. Bone bruises take time. I got a new helmet out of the deal instead of nasty scalp lacerations. Shredded my jersey..damn.
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Old 05-28-13, 05:59 PM   #5383
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I ride in the most dangerous city in the nation, maybe the world for cyclists (according to Bicycling Magazine). I've crashed once, solo and bounced my helmet on the pavement. Did the helmet mitigate my injury? Since the helmet cracked, and that is how it absorbs and dissipates force, I will say yes, it probably absorbed most of the energy that would have been transferred to my skull.
You can say that, yes. However you would be wrong. Not in the sense of "I disagree with your opinion and think that you are wrong" but "You are talking provable bloody rubbish in contradiction of accepted, lab-tested science":

1. Helmets do NOT absorb energy by cracking! They absorb energy by liner compression, WHICH REQUIRES AN UNCRACKED SHELL. If you are getting to set yourself up as a forensic witness, at least do some research:

http://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct...47008514,d.d2k

http://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct...47008514,d.d2k

..The amount of energy taken to crack a shell is trivial. This is one of the things that lazy people who don't do research don't get: when a helmet is overloaded, it no longer subtracts the energy it is designed to absorb from a crash - instead the shell fails with about 5-10% of the energy taken for liner compression, the liner splits instead of compressing, and you get about zero benefit.

2. The idea that because something absorbed SOME energy it absorbed MOST of it is just a failure of basic logic and arithmetic
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Old 05-28-13, 06:00 PM   #5384
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Two recent reports.

http://heapro.oxfordjournals.org/content/22/3/191.full


http://www.iihs.org/research/topics/pdf/r1186.pdf

One interesting conclusion you can make for yourself. The greatest positive reason for an adult to wear a helmet is training their young (<16 years) child/grandchild/niece/nephew to wear one in those high risk years. Of course...once teenage hormones kick in all bets are off. No one on this forum appears to be arguing that young children shouldn't wear helmets.
Actually according to most reputable studies, current helmets have about zero benefit for children... Or worse:

Quote:
http://www.cyclehelmets.org/1250.html

A helmet law for cyclists under 18 was introduced in Alberta, Canada, on 1 May 2002.

[h=4]Edmonton – 59% reduction in children’s cycling by 2004[/h] Cyclists were counted in Edmonton (a city in Alberta), in 2000 (pre-law) and 2004 (post-law). The percentage of cyclists under 18 fell from 26% in the pre-law survey, to 15% post-law (Hagel et al, 2006), suggesting that the law discouraged substantial numbers of youngsters from cycling. Compared to adults who were not required to wear helmets, children’s cycling (<13 years) fell by 59%, with a 41% reduction for teenagers aged 13-17 (Hagel et al, 2006).

At the time, great concerns were also expressed that injuries per cyclist had increased after the introduction of Alberta’s helmet law (BHRF, 1055).

[h=4]Wider surveys – 56% reduction in children cycling and 27% reduction in teenagers, by 2006[/h] Comprehensive survey results were published in 2011 in a PhD thesis (Karkhaneh, 2011). The data were collated from observational studies of Albertan cyclists in several cities, involving 330 hours of pre-law observations in 2000, and 313 hours of observation post-law in 2006.

The survey showed a large and significant 56% decrease in children's cycling, confirming the large decrease in children’s cycling noted in the Edmonton survey, 2 years earlier. The greatest decreases were at schools (68% decrease), on commuter routes (41% decrease) and in residential areas (37% decrease).

With only 44% as many children cycling, there should have been only 44% as many injuries – i.e. 44% of 1676 = 744. The observed post-law number of injuries – 1676 per year – is 2.37 times higher than would have been expected for the amount of cycling. In contrast, the safety of adult cyclists (who were not affected by the law) improved.

Last edited by meanwhile; 05-28-13 at 06:27 PM.
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Old 05-28-13, 06:04 PM   #5385
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I fall down more often when on a bicycle than when walking (5+ falls cycling vs. 0 falls walking in the last five years or more) and when I fall, I'm more likely to hit my head when falling from a bicycle than when walking. I'm wearing a helmet when cycling because it hurts less when you hit your head while wearing a helmet, and because there's less blood.

And why do I fall more often when cycling? Because I'm taking more risks when cycling than when walking, because I ride bicycles for fun and I walk to get from place A to place B.

So, neither of your presumptions is true, and neither of your conclusions is true. Seems like you didn't really think all this through, did you?
If you are incompetent cyclist, or doing stuff like bmx, then you should certainly wear a helmet. However: I consider the second obvious, and if you are the first ***you should learn to stop being incompetent.*** If you're so bad that you can't stay on the bike, the odds of your eventually doing something stupid where you go across the hood of a car and die are pretty damn high, and you should be concentrating on avoiding this rather than reduciing boo-boos.
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Old 05-28-13, 06:07 PM   #5386
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Welcome back, Meanwhile... It's been a while.
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Old 05-28-13, 06:16 PM   #5387
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So you don't know if the wearer of this particular helmet got any injury mitigation benefit out of it or not. Got it.
Wrong.

- Only 10% of recovered helmets OVERALL show liner compression; all of these studied had intact shells

- The poster's helmets showed shell splitting, so the odds are - well, just remote - that it provided a benefit.

Logic is hard for you, isn't it?

Quote:
...and unless you're reading with an agenda already in mind, it could simply be a statement that the crash was bad enough that the rider should very well have received a concussion, helmet or no. Especially if the shop person exclaiming about the situation is aware that helmets do little or nothing where concussion mitigation is concerned.
If you are not intelligent enough to read in CONTEXT - ie the agenda of the poster - this would be the case.

Quote:
POC, Lazer, and Scott are all manufacturing helmets with the licensed MIPS system. Chances are he was not wearing their offerings, but far cry from "No road cycling helmet is."
That's interesting: I'm glad to see an improvement. However these are a fraction of a per cent of the market, and I think an intelligent person would say that if he did say he was wearing a super-rare recently released $300 helmet, we should assume otherwise, yes?




Quote:
"Minor" to "moderate" types of head injury are where helmets actually do provide some protection... Moderate but not serious injury could include laceration, abrasion, and impact damage that the recipient might find rather traumatic, but which an emergency room tech/doc would not classify as serious.
So what you are basically saying is that helmets will only protect against scalp cuts and that buying a helmet that won't increase the risk (very slight) risk of brain injury costs $300...
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Old 05-28-13, 06:24 PM   #5388
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Originally Posted by robble
I just got back from a group ride where one of the guys had a pretty bad fall (i'm still in kit as I type this even). I was behind him as we were going downhill on a wet road about 25-30mph. He applied the brakes due to a sharp corner coming up. One of his tires locked up and the bike seemed to jump sideways out from under him.

He slammed to the ground and skidded/rolled pretty darn far. Road rash all over his body, possible broken hip (he is 70 years old but super fit). front left of his helmet was broken. He couldn't remember anyone's names and kept asking to call his wife multiple times after we had already called her (and an ambulance). Definitely he has a concussion. Who knows how bad it would have been without his helmet.
I know: it would have been exactly the same. Because:

- If he has concussion, the impact energy was past the limits cycling helmets are designed for

- When cycling helmets fail, the shell shatters before liner compression AND NO ENERGY IS ABSORBED

Really: gambling in a piece of safety equipment **without spending a few minutes researching what that equipment can do** is just stupid. Posting an example of an accident and saying "Imagine how worse it would have been without a helmet!!!" as if proves something is pretty damn silly too.

If you want to research the actual science, engineering and epidemology, see http://www.cyclehelmets.org/
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Old 05-28-13, 06:28 PM   #5389
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Welcome back, Meanwhile... It's been a while.
To quote Ellen Ripley: "Did IQ's drop sharply while I was away?"
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Old 05-28-13, 06:30 PM   #5390
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To quote Ellen Ripley: "Did IQ's drop sharply while I was away?"
Nope. It's just that the memory is poor at retaining pain.
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Old 05-28-13, 06:34 PM   #5391
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Beg to differ, I remember being bent over more than a few times by some of the non helmet guys saying that not wearing a helmet is actually safer than wearing a helmet and people shouldn't wear one. It's the main reason I'm still here to try and tell the other side... From post 3722 to 4203 mainly, lately it's been more like it's not worth wearing a helmet because the risk is soo small... Maybe it is, maybe it isn't...
The main reason most people shouldn't wear a helmet is because they are stupid enough to think it will protect them in a serious accident. (You probably do.) But absolutely all the science is against this. Why this bad? Well, some people will indulge in ris compensation - taking risks that they otherwise would not - and others *might* have invested in safety measures that actually stand some chance of working.

Other than: the more acceptance of helmets, the more chance of helmet laws - and this leads to fewer cyclists. Which has a HUGE effect on safety.
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Old 05-28-13, 06:38 PM   #5392
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This helmet stuff makes me laugh, because some of you anti helmet folk are scared to death to ride in a thunderstorm yet your 10,000 times less likely to get struck by lightening then you are having an accident and striking your head! But you'll seek shelter or not go out at all in a T-storm but won't wear a helmet?! http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...7#post15678087 I find it all quite absurd.
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Old 05-28-13, 06:40 PM   #5393
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Nope. It's just that the memory is poor at retaining pain.
Then we must use excruciating agony instead!

Truthfully: most people here will always use helmets because they are scared, and helmets provide comfort. Few people are strong enough to let rationality override such a need.

Or in the words of one of the twentieth century's greatest philosophers: "If God did not want them sheared, he would not have made them sheep."
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Old 05-28-13, 06:44 PM   #5394
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This helmet stuff makes me laugh, because some of you anti helmet folk are scared to death to ride in a thunderstorm yet your 10,000 times less likely to get struck by lightening then you are having an accident and striking your head! But you'll seek shelter or not go out at all in a T-storm but won't wear a helmet?! http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...7#post15678087 I find it all
The only mention of helmets on that page is from some whacko who says

Quote:
Getting struck by lightening while riding a bike is 10000 times less likely to occur then hitting one's head in an some sort of accident, yet people won't wear helmets, but are afraid to ride in a thunderstorm...go figure.
..and that whacko is you. So you are quoting your own opinion as evidence of your opinion's validity... This is NOT an example of smartness!
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Old 05-28-13, 06:49 PM   #5395
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My thinking is, it's better to have and not need, than not have and need. Why is that so Goddamned hard for you to understand?
Obviously you don't really believe that, because you only wear one while cycling. Beyond that, I'm not the one going around arguing that people should or should not wear helmets, so what I "understand" doesn't really have anything to do with it.
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Old 05-28-13, 06:50 PM   #5396
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The only mention of helmets on that page is from some whacko who says



..and that whacko is you. So you are quoting your own opinion as evidence of your opinion's validity... This is NOT an example of smartness!
Right, and not wearing a helmet is an example of smartness...ok then, I play the role of the wacko but you fit right in as a ventriloquists dum...
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Old 05-28-13, 06:54 PM   #5397
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Right, and not wearing a helmet is an example of smartness...ok then, I play the role of the wacko but you fit right in as a ventriloquists dum...
Ok:

- So my argument is based on statements from helmet engineers and statisticians who have studied helmet effectiveness

- And your argument is based on Argument By Conclusion - usually regarded as the stupidest and most self evident of classical logical fallacies...

Do you get why there is vibe to my posts suggesting that I look down on you?
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Old 05-28-13, 07:26 PM   #5398
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I know: it would have been exactly the same. Because:

- If he has concussion, the impact energy was past the limits cycling helmets are designed for

- When cycling helmets fail, the shell shatters before liner compression AND NO ENERGY IS ABSORBED

Really: gambling in a piece of safety equipment **without spending a few minutes researching what that equipment can do** is just stupid. Posting an example of an accident and saying "Imagine how worse it would have been without a helmet!!!" as if proves something is pretty damn silly too.

If you want to research the actual science, engineering and epidemology, see http://www.cyclehelmets.org/
what a load of crap.

let try a test.. you wear a helmet and let me hit you on the head with a hammer. then lets repeat the test without you wearing a helmet and lets see which one causes the most damage.

despite the name of that website you listed it is clearly a completely anti-hlemet biased site.. such as Monsantos website declaring how safe GMO foods are.

IF you don't want to wear a helmet then don't but don't insult anyone with any common sense by saying it won't help you when you slam your head into the pavement.
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Old 05-28-13, 07:28 PM   #5399
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You can say that, yes. However you would be wrong. Not in the sense of "I disagree with your opinion and think that you are wrong" but "You are talking provable bloody rubbish in contradiction of accepted, lab-tested science":

1. Helmets do NOT absorb energy by cracking! They absorb energy by liner compression, WHICH REQUIRES AN UNCRACKED SHELL. If you are getting to set yourself up as a forensic witness, at least do some research:

http://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct...47008514,d.d2k

http://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct...47008514,d.d2k

..The amount of energy taken to crack a shell is trivial. This is one of the things that lazy people who don't do research don't get: when a helmet is overloaded, it no longer subtracts the energy it is designed to absorb from a crash - instead the shell fails with about 5-10% of the energy taken for liner compression, the liner splits instead of compressing, and you get about zero benefit.

2. The idea that because something absorbed SOME energy it absorbed MOST of it is just a failure of basic logic and arithmetic
I should have been more clear. The first helmet I mentioned maintained its outer shell integrity. The inner foam cracked (and was compressed). I'm still maintaining my belief, however irrational you may see it, that it helped me escape more serious injury.
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Old 05-28-13, 07:33 PM   #5400
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MEanwhile - That website you posted has this link to the "results" of a study under the sentence "UK law would lead to 253 more deaths according to assessment using WHO HEAT tool, while Government research finds no reliable evidence of helmet benefit."
Yet, if you track down the actual study it says "The project concludes that in the event of an on-road accident, cycle helmets would be expected to be effective in a range of real-world accident conditions, particularly the most common accidents that do not involve a collision with another vehicle and are often believed to consist of simple falls or tumbles over the handlebars"
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