DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

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Phileas
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DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby Phileas » 27 Jul 2020, 10:02am

I was reading the key points here https://royalsociety.org/news/2020/05/delve-group-publishes-evidence-paper-on-use-of-face-masks/ and noticed helmets mentioned in this paragraph:

”While there is a suggestion that use of masks might make individuals engage in more risky behaviour, at a population level the introduction of safety measures like HIV prevention measures, seatbelts and helmets have led to increased safety and even increased safety oriented behaviour. There is no evidence that individuals will engage in risky behaviour amongst the public during epidemics.”

I wondered what kind of helmets they’re referring to.

Jdsk
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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby Jdsk » 27 Jul 2020, 10:10am

Thanks for that.

They don't say, and the quoted reference (24) in the main report doesn't help. What they're trying to do in that bit is address the question of risk compensation.

Obvious possibilities are construction workers, motorcyclists and cyclists.

I suggest writing to one of their Secretariat to ask:
https://rs-delve.github.io/people.html

Jonathan

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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby thirdcrank » 27 Jul 2020, 10:40am

I think that "risky" in this context may be ambiguous ie more inclined to take risks (through a perception of being protected) or more likely to do something which carries a risk simply by wearing the protection eg touching the face more frequently because of the discomfort caused in this case by wearing a mask.

As somebody implied on the other current mask thread, earlier in the pandemic, when there was not sufficient PPE for medical personnel, the government "followed the science" and decreed that masks would be a bad thing for Joe and Josephine Public, citing the increased face touching etc.

Now, when supplies of PPE have eased and the market seems to be flooded with masks of unknown standards, masks are now a good thing and compulsory in some situations.

IMO, it's that change of tack which is causing a lot of the debate.

Phileas
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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby Phileas » 27 Jul 2020, 10:53am

Yes but the paragraph quoted implies that helmet wearing may lead to less risky behaviour. Unfortunately I’m too lazy to read the report so I don’t know if any supporting evidence is supplied for that assertion.

Pete Owens
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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby Pete Owens » 27 Jul 2020, 11:25am

The statement is a straight forward lie.

There is clear evidence for risk compensation in all those areas.

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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby mjr » 27 Jul 2020, 11:50am

Jdsk wrote:Obvious possibilities are construction workers, motorcyclists and cyclists.

I suggest writing to one of their Secretariat to ask:
https://rs-delve.github.io/people.html

Please do. I suspect it's motorcycling helmets, which have deterred lots of people from motorcycling and thereby contributed to increased motorcar landgrab.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby uwidavid » 27 Jul 2020, 12:28pm

Not only that but they trot out the seat belt thing again. The Isles report (and some of John Adams stuff) should be compulsory reading for those who doubt risk compensation.

Jdsk
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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby Jdsk » 27 Jul 2020, 12:37pm

I've now read Adams, thanks to someone posting a link to it on the Web.

There's some interesting stuff in it. But the existence of a book doesn't get anywhere the need to avoid studying whether risk compensation actually occurs in each situation in which it's suspected. Without that there's a risk that it becomes more of a belief system than a scientific observation.

Jonathan

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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby thirdcrank » 27 Jul 2020, 1:39pm

One of my oft-repeated examples of risk compensation is the ghost shirt.

The Lakota Sioux were the only tribe to believe that the ghost shirt clothing would protect them from the bullets of the white man.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Ghost_Shirt

My oft-repeating has been with regards to people like me wearing flo-yellow cycling togs. AIUI, Sioux warriors faced firearms in the belief that they would be saved or guaranteed a place in heaven. Cyclists don't think that a hi-viz ghost shirt will protect them from injury in a collision, but that it will break the SMIDSY spell uttered by the driver with forked tongue afterwards.

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The utility cyclist
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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby The utility cyclist » 27 Jul 2020, 9:05pm

Phileas wrote:I was reading the key points here https://royalsociety.org/news/2020/05/delve-group-publishes-evidence-paper-on-use-of-face-masks/ and noticed helmets mentioned in this paragraph:

”While there is a suggestion that use of masks might make individuals engage in more risky behaviour, at a population level the introduction of safety measures like HIV prevention measures, seatbelts and helmets have led to increased safety and even increased safety oriented behaviour. There is no evidence that individuals will engage in risky behaviour amongst the public during epidemics.”

I wondered what kind of helmets they’re referring to.

The statement surrounding people not taking additional risks whilst wearing face coverings is absolute BS. I see it at my place of work, I see it at care homes, hospitals )when I visit for blood tests), basically everywhere that I go! I know as a former health, safety and hygiene trainer and auditor which was a part of my former career (catering manager) that people made the same old mistakes due to having PPE and/or other safety aids. the overuse and reliance on anti-bac used to wind me up as well.

People get lazy, over confident, blase, they forget the basic principles all too readily, and when the safety aids/PPE etc aren't suffice to get you out of trouble then the quag hits the fan in a big way!
This happens everywhere, hardly any surprise when RIDDOR was rolled out and hard hats/hi-vis were forced upon workers, 'accidents' at work increased significantly, usual suspects, those with the big lump of metal e.g. crane operator or dozer, or people whom have items that can harm end up making more errors because of the perception that everyone is safer including they themselves simply by donning hi-vis and a hard hat :twisted:
Last edited by The utility cyclist on 29 Jul 2020, 1:45pm, edited 1 time in total.

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The utility cyclist
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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby The utility cyclist » 27 Jul 2020, 9:07pm

Jdsk wrote:I've now read Adams, thanks to someone posting a link to it on the Web.

There's some interesting stuff in it. But the existence of a book doesn't get anywhere the need to avoid studying whether risk compensation actually occurs in each situation in which it's suspected. Without that there's a risk that it becomes more of a belief system than a scientific observation.

Jonathan

And yet there's a huge belief system that PPE etc does work, despite the lack of evidence, so many 'studies' that end up with confirmation bias using mickey poor methodology.

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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby Pete Owens » 28 Jul 2020, 12:01am

Jdsk wrote:I've now read Adams, thanks to someone posting a link to it on the Web.

There's some interesting stuff in it. But the existence of a book doesn't get anywhere the need to avoid studying whether risk compensation actually occurs in each situation in which it's suspected. Without that there's a risk that it becomes more of a belief system than a scientific observation.

Jonathan

Risk compensation is universal human behaviour - it has been directly measured in numerous situations.

We have an inbuilt instinct for self preservation (and if you are going to request evidence for this I would refer you to the works of Charles Darwin - if we didn't we would become extinct) Of course we adapt our behaviour according to the perceived level of risk in a situation - and balance the level of risk to the level of reward. If you are going to assert that some particular situation is exceptional and people don't take any notice of the level of risk then it is up to you to provide the evidence, rather than make unfounded assertions and constantly demand that everyone else provide proof.

It is if you were to challenge Newtons theory of gravity on the basis that he watched an apple fall - and then expect him to separately prove that oranges, grapes, pineapples, bananas etc would also fall to the ground.

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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby pjclinch » 29 Jul 2020, 9:46am

Jdsk wrote:I've now read Adams, thanks to someone posting a link to it on the Web.

There's some interesting stuff in it. But the existence of a book doesn't get anywhere the need to avoid studying whether risk compensation actually occurs in each situation in which it's suspected. Without that there's a risk that it becomes more of a belief system than a scientific observation.


There's an increasing body of academic work on it to the point where you can start with an assumption that it may well be in operation (you may come to change that assumption, but it really is safe enough as a starting point). As for the danger of letting personal belief override clear observation, IIRC it's Hagel who conveniently ignores his own published work on risk compensation in his other work on helmet efficacy...

There is no real doubt that it's a general issue, but as you'll have gathered form Risk the effects will very probably vary between cultural groups and, it follows, between individuals. Which means that "each situation in which it's suspected" will come down to the particular individual involved, and it's thus not something where you can say how it will affect an individual without knowing a lot about them.
That doesn't mean it's unsciency faith based speculation, it makes it difficult to predict how it will affect individuals. It is very much a principle argument throughout Risk that the whole field is messy and unpredictable and doesn't work like we'd like to think science and engineering should. While that might not be convenient it is like the Real World. Where you have a human trying to manage risk you have an inherently complex system with lots of uncontrolled variables.

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irc
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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby irc » 31 Jul 2020, 12:52pm

Phileas wrote:I was reading the key points here https://royalsociety.org/news/2020/05/delve-group-publishes-evidence-paper-on-use-of-face-masks/ and noticed helmets mentioned in this paragraph:

[ level the introduction of safety measures like HIV prevention measures, seatbelts and helmets have led to increased safety and even increased safety oriented behaviour.
.


So they are saying seatbelts made people drive more safely? The evidence is the exact opposite. Drivers lives saved at the cost of increased cyclist and pedestrian deaths.

Now they may wish to argue that overall seatbelts saved lives and the vulnerable road user deaths were the case of breaking eggs to make an omlette but I disagree that seatbelts were good for everyone and didn't change behaviour.

http://www.john-adams.co.uk/2009/11/05/ ... -the-data/

Likewise masks will change behaviour. I was in a large shopping centre yesterday. Most people wearing masks. Many ignoring one way arrows and many ignoring 2m distancing even when possible. IE walking in straight lines when pre mask people often circled round each other to keep distance.

Personally I think the risk from shopping is minimal anyway. I suspect most spread is in the workplace and the home where there is prolonged close contact.

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Re: DELVE group publishes evidence paper on the use of face masks in tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Postby pjclinch » 31 Jul 2020, 1:05pm

irc wrote:Likewise masks will change behaviour. I was in a large shopping centre yesterday. Most people wearing masks. Many ignoring one way arrows and many ignoring 2m distancing even when possible.


This behaviour built-in at local stores here, with the removal of one-way lanes once face masks were compulsory. The behaviour change is quite marked and obvious, and has been effectively encouraged by the shop.

Pete.
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