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  1. #1
    reductio ad absurdum ericy's Avatar
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    Truck drives over cyclist's head - helmet saves him...

    http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/nation...ml?source=mypi


    MADISON, Wis. -- A delivery truck ran over a cyclist's head, leaving him only with a concussion and a mangled helmet. Ryan Lipscomb, 26, was shaken up, especially after he saw the condition of his helmet.

    "I didn't see it coming, but I sure felt it roll over my head," he said. "It feels really strange to have a truck run over your head."

    Lipscomb, a graduate student in medical physics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, was riding swiftly down a bike path in Madison Friday afternoon. As he approached an intersection where he said he had a green light, he noticed the truck preparing to make a right turn in front of him.

    The truck wasn't going to stop, Lipscomb said, so he slammed on his brakes, flipping his bike and landing in the street.

    A moment later the truck rolled over his head - and kept going.

    His black Giro helmet was flattened, tread marks visible on the cracked frame.
    Not sure what else I can add about this. It reminds me of years ago when I was playing roller hockey, and some of the guys refused to wear helmets, or wore helmets without face shields. One day, someone took a slapshot that went wild and was headed for the spot right between my eyes. Fortunately I had a face shield - the ball bounced off and landed in my glove - I dropped it on the ground and play continued - no big deal. It still got me thinking though....

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    Quote Originally Posted by ericy
    ...Not sure what else I can add about this.....
    Well, first you could get your facts straight: a bicycle helmet isn't built to withstand anywhere near the weight of a motor vehicle rolling across it--so the bicycle helmet most-certainly didn't "save" much of anything here.
    ~

  3. #3
    Jewish Media Conspirator asherlighn's Avatar
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    Truck rolls over biker's head, biker is ok.

    Helmet probably saved him.
    Quote Originally Posted by dutret
    The fact is that most peoples sense of what rides well is easily overcome by their sense of what looks cool.

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    Senior Member filtersweep's Avatar
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    You seriously believe everything you read?

    Quote Originally Posted by asherlighn

  5. #5
    Senior Member BLIZZ's Avatar
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    His head was probably spit out of the helmet like a banana out of its peel. With the helmet going under the tire and his head beside the tire.
    I'm not totally useless....I can be used as a BAD example.

  6. #6
    Member bike monkey's Avatar
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    So if he had no helmet on, his skull would have spit out of his scalp like a banana peel

  7. #7
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    I guess truth in news doesn't mean much in the Post Intelligencer.

    The truck didn't run over his head. Yeah, he may have had his helmet crushed but it looks as if the truck was on the rear portion that the head isn't in.



    I'd call it a close call and a red herring. Attention should be better focused elsewhere.

    Here was a guy on a bike missing an oncoming truck turning into his path. The issue isn't the helmet, it's what happened before the collision.
    Last edited by closetbiker; 05-16-07 at 05:15 PM.

  8. #8
    eternalvoyage
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    Quote Originally Posted by closetbiker
    I guess truth in news doesn't mean much in the Post Intelligencer.

    The truck didn't run over his head. Yeah, he may have had his helmet crushed but it looks as if the truck was on the rear portion that the head isn't in.
    Sensationalized, exaggerated reporting. Makes for more lively, entertaining reading. Sells papers.

    I agree, his head was not run over.

  9. #9
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Niles H.
    ...Makes for more lively, entertaining reading. Sells papers...
    ...does nothing to prevent collisions like this from happening again. Ensures future sensational stories. More papers sold.

  10. #10
    cab horn
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doug5150
    Well, first you could get your facts straight: a bicycle helmet isn't built to withstand anywhere near the weight of a motor vehicle rolling across it--so the bicycle helmet most-certainly didn't "save" much of anything here.
    ~
    +1 billion

    God I hate stories like this.
    Mes compaingnons cui j'amoie et cui j'aim,... Me di, chanson.

  11. #11
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    So do I. And they keep repeating themselves.

    A couple of years ago, in Calgary there was a similar story with more tragic results. On the front page of the Herald was a story of a cyclist killed by a truck making a right hand turn. The cyclist had been riding on a sidewalk/cycle path and was hit when the path intersected with the roadway. The story featured words like, it was a "freak" occurance, and there was nothing that could have been done to "predict" this happening. The cyclist did "everything" she could. She was wearing a helmet and was on a bike path.

    Last year there was another story in Victoria, BC.

    Barbara Sheldan was the most cautious of cyclists, and she was doing everything right...The 43-year-old mother was wearing her helmet. Her bike was equipped with front and rear lights...The accident happened around 4:45 p.m. Wednesday as traffic in the 800 block of Craigflower Road was bumper-to-bumper...Traffic had parted to let the vehicle...turn across the road into the driveway of an apartment building...(the cyclist was passing the backed up traffic in a lane to the right of traffic) the vehicle crushed and pinned Sheldan. Emergency crews could not even start first aid until a group of about six witnesses lifted the car off the ground, said Sylven.

    "Unfortunately, as a result of the injuries she received, they weren't able to save her life," said Sylven...She and Tim had both cycled home for a couple of years, he said. "I'll be calling the biking quits because I'm the only parent these kids have now."

    Now both these incidents mentions that everything that was done was all that could be done (mostly, riding in/on a bikelane/path and wearing a helmet) but all three stories don't mention that if the cyclist or motorist had looked for and seen one another and yeilded, there would be no tragedies.

    Instead, we get this story about the helmet saving a life, so the message is not to ride responsibly and be observant and co-operative, the only right thing to do is wear a helmet, it'll save your life. History is bound to repeat itself.
    Last edited by closetbiker; 05-17-07 at 02:13 PM.

  12. #12
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    In a perfect world everyone would watch what they were doing, equipment wouldn’t fail and folks would quit dumping their opinions (baggage) like it was somehow enlightened knowledge from some personal inspiration (or better) that the rest are simply to stupid to see.

    It is totally conceivable and predictable that a helmeted head has a better chance of avoiding trauma than one without one. It is too bad this sort of story upsets some… I simply hope that other things get their ire as quickly, such as domestic violence, poverty and child abuse etc. (Save your shots and ignominy for the enemy.) Blessings.

  13. #13
    Senior Member filtersweep's Avatar
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    Are you responding to the same post as the rest of us?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rocke
    In a perfect world everyone would watch what they were doing, equipment wouldn’t fail and folks would quit dumping their opinions (baggage) like it was somehow enlightened knowledge from some personal inspiration (or better) that the rest are simply to stupid to see.

    It is totally conceivable and predictable that a helmeted head has a better chance of avoiding trauma than one without one. It is too bad this sort of story upsets some… I simply hope that other things get their ire as quickly, such as domestic violence, poverty and child abuse etc. (Save your shots and ignominy for the enemy.) Blessings.

  14. #14
    Faster but still slow slowandsteady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocke
    In a perfect world everyone would watch what they were doing, equipment wouldn’t fail and folks would quit dumping their opinions (baggage) like it was somehow enlightened knowledge from some personal inspiration (or better) that the rest are simply to stupid to see.

    It is totally conceivable and predictable that a helmeted head has a better chance of avoiding trauma than one without one. It is too bad this sort of story upsets some… I simply hope that other things get their ire as quickly, such as domestic violence, poverty and child abuse etc. (Save your shots and ignominy for the enemy.) Blessings.

    I don't quite understand your point. This IS a BIKE forum(where we discuss bike related matters), not the domestive violence, poverty and child abuse forum, though that would be interesting.......
    "Ride lots." -- Eddy Merckx

  15. #15
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocke
    It is totally conceivable and predictable that a helmeted head has a better chance of avoiding trauma than one without one.
    well, that's a different thread, but check out these reputable links

    http://www.bicyclesafe.com/helmets.html

    Focusing on helmets distracts people from what's more likely to actually save their lives: Learning how to ride safely.

    and

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bicycle_helmet

    Evidence for the efficacy of helmets in preventing serious injury is contradictory and inconclusive.

  16. #16
    TLN
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    Senior Member TLN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocke
    In a perfect world everyone would watch what they were doing, equipment wouldn’t fail and folks would quit dumping their opinions (baggage) like it was somehow enlightened knowledge from some personal inspiration (or better) that the rest are simply to stupid to see.

    It is totally conceivable and predictable that a helmeted head has a better chance of avoiding trauma than one without one. It is too bad this sort of story upsets some… I simply hope that other things get their ire as quickly, such as domestic violence, poverty and child abuse etc. (Save your shots and ignominy for the enemy.) Blessings.

    I dont think anyone here is "dumping" their opinions or is upset... we are just being realistic. A helmet is good if you fall off your bike and perhaps bounce your melon off a curb or the roadway... but under the wheels of a several thousand, or even a several hundred, pound vehicle... c'mon. Even though some people pay well over $100 for a helmet, they will not withstand that sort of strain.


    Good post on those links. Very interesting!
    1986 Bianchi Super Leggera
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  17. #17
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TLN
    I dont think anyone here is "dumping" their opinions or is upset... we are just being realistic. A helmet is good if you fall off your bike and perhaps bounce your melon off a curb or the roadway... but under the wheels of a several thousand, or even a several hundred, pound vehicle... c'mon. Even though some people pay well over $100 for a helmet, they will not withstand that sort of strain.


    Good post on those links. Very interesting!
    Absolutely, plus the focus of the article turns a blind eye to the real danger (irresponsible riding) and draws attention to a false "cure" (helmets can withstand crushing from a delivery truck)

  18. #18
    cab horn
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    Quote Originally Posted by closetbiker
    Absolutely, plus the focus of the article turns a blind eye to the real danger (irresponsible riding) and draws attention to a false "cure" (helmets can withstand crushing from a delivery truck)
    +1 billion
    Mes compaingnons cui j'amoie et cui j'aim,... Me di, chanson.

  19. #19
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    I am sorry for my lack of detail, I am currently recovering from a big drop from my machine and will try and explain my point.

    “Absolutely, plus the focus of the article turns a blind eye to the real danger (irresponsible riding) and draws attention to a false "cure" (helmets can withstand crushing from a delivery truck)”

    I do not find the room to judge another’s behavior based on the little information given. In my recent accident the police tried to frame the event as my carelessness. (I was not there at the time and never met the man or he me.) The witnesses stated categorically that I was riding safely and the event was a failure of a bike part under high stress. (My chain snapped during hard acceleration, below the speed limit) My helmet saved my life literally as it bounced off of a car and hit the ground so hard I bled for several hours in my brain.

    The point is, we all ride irresponsibly at times, who are we to judge an event we were not even present for? To call a helmet a “false cure” sounds more like false pride. Helmets are a wonderful, essential, addition to our kit. (I have to ask, what costs more, your stem or your helmet?) One can only be responsible for ones own actions; last I noticed I was in the minority of self willed beings on this trip through the world. And then there are the events like failed material things, all material things are subject to decay and evolution. One can only be so responsible, and then there is the rest of the world to deal with. Play the odds and wear protective gear for all the other moments we are not in control of, this is not a false cure, it is common sense. I suppose seat belts are there strictly because of the irresponsible drivers? Condoms do not need to worn by responsible sexual partners? If we all shake hands and agree to play fair no one needs to wear a helmet during sports? If every one else washes their hands why should I?

    Your statement (probably like mine) overly simplifies the premises of what we do and why we do it and that is the danger, it becomes too easy to dismiss or trivialize the blessings.

    As far as the delivery truck helmet, is it not conceivable that the riders forward progress was stopped by the helmet on the wheel which crushed it, and were it not for the helmet the head would have stopped the progress and hence it would have been crushed? To argue how the head came into danger is to miss the point; the awesome thing is that for whoever’s fault it was, a brother or sister gets to live another day and do what we love so well, ride a bike another mile, hold a loved one, scream at the NBA Finals, tell a story that may persuade someone to act more responsibly. They are compelled to believe it is because of the helmet, who are we to sit at home and second guess the experiance of the person who was there?

    I find nothing false in any of that. “Love one another…” Blessings.

  20. #20
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Rocke][FONT=Times New Roman]I do not find the room to judge another

    *don't cha just love the edit feature when you spot a spelling/typing error, add that extra letter, and your whole post disappears?*
    Last edited by closetbiker; 05-18-07 at 12:23 PM.

  21. #21
    I drink your MILKSHAKE Raiyn's Avatar
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    Hey closet I'll just bet you're having a blast keeping up with the at least seven versions of this thread

  22. #22
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    Naw, I didn't even bother to repost what I lost on the edit.

    If your dumb enough to fall for the story, there's not much hope for ya.

    (Pretty sad commentary from the press though)

  23. #23
    TLN
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    Quote Originally Posted by closetbiker
    Naw, I didn't even bother to repost what I lost on the edit.

    If your dumb enough to fall for the story, there's not much hope for ya.

    (Pretty sad commentary from the press though)
    But you should expect that from the general press. Hell, they cant even get the weather right let alone any story. Thats why when I read a newspaper I take a sharpie, alternately cross out 2 out of every 3 lines... then read it. The story makes as much sense and you dont waist as much time.
    1986 Bianchi Super Leggera
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  24. #24
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    The picture is a big deal because thats what people are going to remember. Someone (alive) holding up the broken helmet. No ones going to remember the guy could easily have avoided the collision if he had a little common sene, or that a helmet could never resisit that type of pressure or that the head wasn't in the portion crushed. Dumb people will see the picture and figure that's the story, dumb people will get out and ride their bikes the same way and die because of a helmets limitations and people will say, riding a bike will get you killed, better stick to a car and by the way, get those bikers off the road for their own good, they'll get killed out on the street.

  25. #25
    eternalvoyage
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    Quote Originally Posted by ericy
    http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/nation...ml?source=mypi



    Not sure what else I can add about this. It reminds me of years ago when I was playing roller hockey, and some of the guys refused to wear helmets, or wore helmets without face shields. One day, someone took a slapshot that went wild and was headed for the spot right between my eyes. Fortunately I had a face shield - the ball bounced off and landed in my glove - I dropped it on the ground and play continued - no big deal. It still got me thinking though....
    Yes, I think good protective gear is important. And there is a lot of room for improvement and enhancement in quality and effectiveness.

    Helmets are good in some situations. They could also be improved. And there is other protective gear that gets ignored.

    ***
    Unfortunately, the newspaper story does a disservice (to some at least) by being inaccurate. There are so many other, more accurate stories that could make the same point, without the distraction of their implausibility or inaccurate nature.

    "MADISON, Wis. -- A delivery truck ran over a cyclist's head, leaving him only with a concussion and a mangled helmet."

    No, sorry -- it did not happen that way! Falsehood, plain and simple.

    I've followed this story on other threads, and other websites, and something that strikes me very strongly is this:

    Almost nobody bothers to take a good, close, objective look at the helmet in the picture. You can see where the tire ran over the helmet.

    People go with their thoughts and speculations, and get lost in them... -- to the point of not even looking!

    This is a dangerous tendency, and is responsible for many accidents and failures of observation.

    People mix their ideas with observations -- it happens a lot. It happens very loosely and carelessly, and it distorts accuracy of perception.

    It's also responsible for a lot of accidents (and this makes it a good learning opportunity -- to see this tendency in action, and move out of it).

    It happens with car drivers and with cyclists and with reading stories like this. One person on another site said something like, "It's an AP story, it must be true." (!) -- which is another case of distorting facts and observations with assumptions.

    ***
    There is also truth, it seems to me, in what someone said about enhanced or improved riding skills and safety (and paying more attention to that field).

    And what someone said about safety and soundness of equipment.

    All are important.

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