Was He Wearing a Helmet?
My neighbor is a family medical doctor; we crossed paths recently while she was washing her car and I was taking out the trash. We got to talking about the recent bike fatalities.
It’s one of my standard questions of every patient: ‘Do you wear a helmet?’
She was surprised when I didn’t nod my head. And even more surprised when I told her there’s a lot of talk about helmets discouraging more people to get on bikes.
“Helmets kinda reaffirm that cycling is dangerous,” I told her.
Of course, traditional media can’t cover a bike injury without anouncing whether the bike rider was wearing a helmet. Checklist journalism requires them to say yes or no. But helmets are made of plastic; they’re not that strong and won’t help you much if you get hit by a bus.
Here in the US the public remains unconvinced. Meanwhile helmet requirements are a pain in the neck for cities initiating bike share systems.
My kids think I look pretty dorky in mine; they insist I remove it no matter how short the stop.
Elizabeth Rosenthal brings us up to date with, “To Encourage Biking, Cities Lose the Helmets“, in the New York Times.