The article I wrote for "Croakey", concerning Australia's vexed issue of mandatory helmet laws, was published today. Predictably, a small flurry of comments has raised implausible claims of protection afforded by helmets - the following is a classic!:
"...I could take you to ED and you could see the cyclists brought in by ambulance after a truck or a car has run over someone’s head."
...a bicycle helmet would protect me from a truck running over my head? No kidding!!!!
Unquestioning loyalty to bicycle helmets has spawned a general acceptance of fatuous helmet-protecting dogma. Notwithstanding this craven desire to believe all the helmet-hype, scientific evidence shows that contrary to popular opinion, bicycle helmets do not provide this mantle of protection.
The belief in helmets has been held together by a belief in their superior protective capabilities, coupled with the 'danger-mongering' of cycling. Inexplicably we have completely lost any critical powers to be able disseminate helmet information for what it actually is - helmet promotion.
But cycling is not dangerous:
- our 'fattest-nation' status is
- our catastrophic committment to the oil industry is
- our inertia in the face of climate change is
So what can we do?
Well for starters...lets' get physical (onto our bikes) & let's get critical (decide for ourselves whether to helmet or not)!!
...also visit "Croakey" and volunteer your thoughts...!!
Quick update with Roads & Traffic Authority (RTA) and my exemption application:
* application received by the Centre for Road Safety yesterday (despatched March 10 2010)
* application currently being processed
* application process cannot be discussed whilst being processed
* application will be processed within a month (June 5 2010, 3 months after intitial despatch)
...and just as a little afterthought, how does one distinguish between a "Department", a "Unit" and a "Centre"? I'm curious - it seems to be an important distinction, and I have been the recipient of much 'authoritative disapproval' asking for the incorrect "whatever"!