TonyR wrote: pjclinch wrote:
But its notable that the death rate in professional cycling since helmets were made mandatory has tripled
Sample base is pretty small, number of fatalities is pretty small. So not really that notable, and hard to isolate from other factors like rise of bonkers BMX and downhill MTB, increased use of faster but more awkward TT bikes, increased peloton sizes and the like.
Helmets may be a factor but you really don't have anything approaching a smoking gun. You've got enough fuel to say there's not a proven safety reason to mandate them, but not to lay the blame for a higher death rate.
And you know all that without even having seen the data?
All I'm really saying is I suspect it's a bit more complicated than directly and implicitly causally associating helmet requirements with three-fold death rate increases.
I base that on some moderately well informed guesswork: being paid to race bikes isn't a very big field of employment, and judging from the e-pages of Cycling News (and in particular their Facebook feed) not very many of them are getting dead. As members of Giant Alpecin pointed out they could have had a significant portion of the team annihilated last week in a single traffic incident, so we're at the level where statistical noise will be a problem. Pros have been voicing serious safety concerns but the size of the peloton appears to be regarded as more of a problem. Maybe you know far more about that than, say, Bauke Mollema, but again I think I have cause for Reasonable Doubt. And I also know that different aspects of cycle sport have had different relationships with helmets over the time from which they were made mandatory for the pro-peloton, and that's going to be difficult to account for, and I know that equipment has developed considerably over that time too (particularly for MTB and TT), so again you have plenty of variables to add in to the mix to confuse it.
And having seen "the data", you've accounted for all of that (and lord knows what other factors haven't occurred to me yet)? If so, do share.
Just as it is very difficult to demonstrate helmets have helped, much the same problems come to the fore in proving they've clearly hindered.
Often seen riding a bike around Dundee...