"You wear a hat, why not wear a helmet?"

This sub-forum all discussions about this "lively" subject. All topics that are substantially about helmets will be moved here, if not placed here correctly in the first place.
Mike Sales
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Re: "You wear a hat, why not wear a helmet?"

Postby Mike Sales » 11 Jan 2017, 10:20am

Wahoofish, you show no sign of having read Speigelhalter and Goldacre on cyclehelmets.

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Re:

Postby Mike Sales » 11 Jan 2017, 1:45pm

wahoofish wrote:
bovlomov wrote:
Si wrote:Now now, lets play nice and not call people trolls. Just because someone has not acquainted themselves with the large amount of scientific and academic reseach done on the subject and thus can't offer opinions with the same intellectual backing that you might, does not make them a troll.

But this person (the "accused") has spent a while contributing to the thread. If he has read anything at all of what others posted, then talk of "random statistics", "common sense" and prison, can only be intended to provoke. I, too, am reluctant to call people trolls, but sometimes it's hard to think of any other explanation for their posts. Pub closing time, perhaps (at 8.40pm?).


Absolutely - I have read every post, every link and as much of the reports referred to as I can. However, I am also a member of another very active cycling forum which counts two emergency room doctors and a number of first responders amongst its members, all of whom strenuously advocate helmet wearing, having repeatedly dealt with the consequences of non use of helmets. Whilst they may not have multiple studies with debatable criteria to back up their POV, and perhaps I am biased by my own experiences with helmets, but I would rather take the opinions of those who pick up the pieces over those who debate endlessly. This thread makes me think of all of the studies that the tobacco and alcohol lobbyists used to trot out to support their contentions that their products were not as bad for you as logic suggested.



You claim to have read every postand link. I have quoted from and linked to Spiegelhalter's and Goldacre's BMJ editorial on helmets so you must have read it. Why do you discount it.

irc
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Re: "You wear a hat, why not wear a helmet?"

Postby irc » 11 Jan 2017, 1:55pm

I think the suggestion of prison sentences for non helmet wearers shows how seriously the debate is taken by Wahoofish . Leaving aside the merits or not of helmets the fact is the only person directly affected is the cyclist. Other RTA offences like mobile phone use or speeding can and do kill other road users but are dealt with by 3pts and a fine. Anyone suggesting prison is not debating in a serious manner. Either an attempt to provoke a reaction or a complete lack of any sense of proportion.

In RTA cases prison is rarely used. Only for cases where death has been caused (often not even then) or serious repeat offenders. Jail for not wearing a helmet? Seriously?

AFAIK The Australian cases of prison is only where fined cyclists have refused to pay fines. A separate matter. Prison is always the ultimate sanction for people that refuse to pay fines.

Mike Sales
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Re: "You wear a hat, why not wear a helmet?"

Postby Mike Sales » 11 Jan 2017, 2:19pm

Wahoofish, Ben Goldacre is the Wellcome research fellow in epidemiology. David Spiegelhalter is the Winton professor for the public understanding of risk. Rather more relevant than A and E doctors.

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Re: "You wear a hat, why not wear a helmet?"

Postby Mike Sales » 11 Jan 2017, 3:14pm

Wahoofish, here is an extract from theBMJ editorial. Read it and think about your talk of jail.

"In any case, the current uncertainty about any benefit from helmet wearing or prmotion is unlikely to be reduced by further research. Equally, we can be certain that helmets will continue to be debated, and at length.
The enduring popularity of helmets as a proposed major intervention for increased road safety may therefore lie not in their direct benefits- which seem too modest to capture compared with other strategies- but more with the cultural, psychological and political debate around risk."

irc
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Re:

Postby irc » 11 Jan 2017, 4:13pm

wahoofish wrote:Absolutely - I have read every post, every link and as much of the reports referred to as I can. However, I am also a member of another very active cycling forum which counts two emergency room doctors and a number of first responders amongst its members, all of whom strenuously advocate helmet wearing, having repeatedly dealt with the consequences of non use of helmets.


I attended road accidents as part of my job for decades. Serious cycling accidents were as rare as hen's teeth. Ask your emergency room doctors what percentage of their workload is cyclist head injuries. The majority of the head injuries I dealt with were falls or assaults. Often with alcohol involved in both cases. Where's the campaign for drinking helmets?

There is a scientific study which agrees with my anecdotal experience that cycling injuries will be a tiny percentage of the workload at an emergency room. In the study case 0.25% of trauma room admissions were cyclists. Only 0.025% of admissions were cyclists with any form of brain injury.

This was a study of all bicycle accidents to adults (18 years or older) presenting to a major trauma center in the 12 months commencing 1 December 2006. The center treats 80,000 patients per year, serving an area with population of 1.2 million. There were a total of 200 cycling injuries, suggesting that only a small proportion of the injuries treated at the trauma center involve injuries to cyclists.


The major effect found in the study was the increased injuries to cyclists who had consumed alcohol. For sober cyclists the head injury rate was similar, helmeted or not.

Including 9 patients with unknown alcohol-status in the not-affected category, there were 69 helmeted and 82 nonhelmeted cyclists who had not used alcohol. Of these, 21 helmeted and 27 non-helmeted cyclists were head injured. Thus there was no real difference in head injury rates of helmet wearers (30.4% HI) and non-wearers (32.9%).


http://www.cyclehelmets.org/1216.html

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Re: "You wear a hat, why not wear a helmet?"

Postby wahoofish » 11 Jan 2017, 4:44pm

irc wrote:
wahoofish wrote:Absolutely - I have read every post, every link and as much of the reports referred to as I can. However, I am also a member of another very active cycling forum which counts two emergency room doctors and a number of first responders amongst its members, all of whom strenuously advocate helmet wearing, having repeatedly dealt with the consequences of non use of helmets.


I attended road accidents as part of my job for decades. Serious cycling accidents were as rare as hen's teeth. Ask your emergency room doctors what percentage of their workload is cyclist head injuries. The majority of the head injuries I dealt with were falls or assaults. Often with alcohol involved in both cases. Where's the campaign for drinking helmets?

There is a scientific study which agrees with my anecdotal experience that cycling injuries will be a tiny percentage of the workload at an emergency room. In the study case 0.25% of trauma room admissions were cyclists. Only 0.025% of admissions were cyclists with any form of brain injury.

This was a study of all bicycle accidents to adults (18 years or older) presenting to a major trauma center in the 12 months commencing 1 December 2006. The center treats 80,000 patients per year, serving an area with population of 1.2 million. There were a total of 200 cycling injuries, suggesting that only a small proportion of the injuries treated at the trauma center involve injuries to cyclists.


The major effect found in the study was the increased injuries to cyclists who had consumed alcohol. For sober cyclists the head injury rate was similar, helmeted or not.

Including 9 patients with unknown alcohol-status in the not-affected category, there were 69 helmeted and 82 nonhelmeted cyclists who had not used alcohol. Of these, 21 helmeted and 27 non-helmeted cyclists were head injured. Thus there was no real difference in head injury rates of helmet wearers (30.4% HI) and non-wearers (32.9%).


http://www.cyclehelmets.org/1216.html


I suspect that the difference is that in South Africa, cycling is a major sport, hobby and form of commuter transport. As an example, when I would go out training at 4.30 am on any morning of the week, the roads would be relatively busy with cyclists training and by the time I was on my way home at 6.15, there would be a lot of commuters out, far more cyclists than I have observed here. In addition, with thousands of kilometres of MTB trails and a huge appetite for racing, with hundreds of events per year, I suspect that the cyclist profile might differ, so take your points on board. Thank you

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[XAP]Bob
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Re:

Postby [XAP]Bob » 11 Jan 2017, 4:59pm

wahoofish wrote:I suspect that the difference is that in South Africa, cycling is a major sport, hobby and form of commuter transport. As an example, when I would go out training at 4.30 am on any morning of the week, the roads would be relatively busy with cyclists training and by the time I was on my way home at 6.15, there would be a lot of commuters out, far more cyclists than I have observed here. In addition, with thousands of kilometres of MTB trails and a huge appetite for racing, with hundreds of events per year, I suspect that the cyclist profile might differ, so take your points on board. Thank you


That seems to be a pretty good indicator then - why do you think cycling in the UK is *so much* more dangerous than in SA?

Do you do anything else in your life which is similarly dangerous?
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There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.

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Re: "You wear a hat, why not wear a helmet?"

Postby PrestonCyclist » 12 Jan 2017, 8:43am

[XAP]Bob wrote:
That seems to be a pretty good indicator then - why do you think cycling in the UK is *so much* more dangerous than in SA?


SA may be amongst the most dangerous places in the world to be on the road but cycle helmets are mandatory so that's alright then.


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Re: Re:

Postby Zigster » 12 Jan 2017, 1:34pm

irc wrote:I attended road accidents as part of my job for decades. Serious cycling accidents were as rare as hen's teeth. Ask your emergency room doctors what percentage of their workload is cyclist head injuries. The majority of the head injuries I dealt with were falls or assaults. Often with alcohol involved in both cases. Where's the campaign for drinking helmets?


I've made that point before to a neighbour who initially trained as a nurse in the late 80s/early 90s, although she hasn't worked as a nurse since then. (I mentioned that because her actual experience is short and during a period when helmet wearing was rare.)

She insisted that if I had seen what she had seen in A&E then I would always wear a helmet. But how many cyclists with serious head injuries had she actually seen? She was never able to say.

About 100 cyclists die each year in the UK (not all helmet wearers, not all from head injuries). How many A&E departments are there? So how many cyclists with serious head injuries would a typical A&E doctor see each year? It won't be anything like enough to be able to get a credible data source for helmet wearing vs non helmet wearing, even before other factors such as selection are taken into account.

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Re: "You wear a hat, why not wear a helmet?"

Postby Mike Sales » 12 Jan 2017, 3:33pm

Wahoofish, does your characterisation of South African cyclists include the majority blak population?
Do many black people race or ride as a hobby? Is the proportion of township commuters in helmets similar to lycra-clad
white businessmen?
It would be interesting to know.

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Re: Re:

Postby mjr » 12 Jan 2017, 5:27pm

Zigster wrote:She insisted that if I had seen what she had seen in A&E then I would always wear a helmet. But how many cyclists with serious head injuries had she actually seen? She was never able to say.

Yes and how many of them had been using a helmet, even at that time when it was less widespread? I'm sorry to say that I've seen head-injured cyclists over the years and all the ones I've seen were users, despite that being a minority - I've seen some injured non-users but not head-injured. Still a low number, so I didn't think it significant until I started reconsidering my own helmet use. To be fair, I know one seriously-head-injured non-user but I didn't see it happen and it doesn't sound to me like a helmet would have saved them anyway.
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Re: "You wear a hat, why not wear a helmet?"

Postby landsurfer » 12 Jan 2017, 5:32pm

I'm a "seriously head injured cyclist" ..... severe concussion, 4 days in Swindon hospital .... cuts, scrapes, blurred vision, vomiting etc ....just using my head as a brake when i was knocked of my bike after a hill climb TT in Wiltshire ..... by a cyclist ..... Are you out there Mick Gaze .... get in touch .... :D
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Re: "You wear a hat, why not wear a helmet?"

Postby 661-Pete » 12 Jan 2017, 6:31pm

They should legislate prison time for non compliance.
Well, if it happens, I can see myself headed straight for a stretch in the slammer (where I'll no doubt meet many of my fellow-CUK'ers :D ). One thing bothers me: while I'm 'inside', will I need to wear a lid at all times? After all, you could do yourself all sorts of mischief, falling from the balcony, tripping over the slops bucket, banging your head against those iron bars....
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Re: "You wear a hat, why not wear a helmet?"

Postby landsurfer » 12 Jan 2017, 6:58pm

661-Pete wrote:
They should legislate prison time for non compliance.
Well, if it happens, I can see myself headed straight for a stretch in the slammer (where I'll no doubt meet many of my fellow-CUK'ers :D ). One thing bothers me: while I'm 'inside', will I need to wear a lid at all times? After all, you could do yourself all sorts of mischief, falling from the balcony, tripping over the slops bucket, banging your head against those iron bars....


+1 ...!
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