another week another complaint :)

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Mick
Participant
#

@eric Not sure why I feel like getting into this tonight, but helmet studies are always flawed, because they never take into account the accidents where the use of a helmet prevented a serious enough injury to seek medical attention

Not a problem. That is totally balanced by not including people whose non-use of a helmet prevented a serious enough injury to seek medical attention.

Sounds trite and cheeky, but it’s real.

If you look at studies like this one?

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1410838/?tool=pubmed

It’s really hard to escape the conclusion that a lot of people honestly believe a helmet saved them injury when the helmet, in fact, did nothing.

I have a crushe helmet at home that at one point I thought had saved me from an injury, too. Most cyclists I know do.

If that were true, though, how come brain injury rates are not much higher in helmet-free Holland?

Of course, I stil wear my helmet. I does protect me from a certain amount of harassment.

I do NOT do the right thing, which would be refrain from helmet wearing so I don’t give non-cyclists the false idea that bicycling is such a dangerous activity that you somehow need a helmet (or give the dangerous idea that a silly little foam hat gives some protection).


quizbot
Participant
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That is totally balanced by not including people whose non-use of a helmet prevented a serious enough injury to seek medical attention.

I’d like to see the paper on that. Sounds almost like you’re saying that helmets can cause injuries. Ill fitted, maybe. Otherwise I think it’s a no brainer.


Erica
Participant
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I think if I’d been wearing a helmet when I crashed into that fence (I was very new to bike commuting, especially with a hill+corner), I may not have needed quite so many stitches in my face. However, I’ll never really know, short of recreating the incident, which I’m pretty sure is a terrible idea.


Mick
Participant
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@quizbot- the paper I cited handles that quite nicely. Read it.

Helmets give people a sense that they are a little safer than not having a helmet. That sense of safety, where none exists, is incredibly dangerous.

Next time you go down a hill, say 18th street, ask youself, “Am I going faster than I would without a helmet?”

If you are, then you are being dangerous: speed is associated with a change in injury rates, including head injuries. Helmet use is not.

http://momentumplanet.com/videos/mikael-colville-andersen-why-we-shouldnt-wear-bike-helmets

Note: he has a similar hair style to the “Flock of cycles” dude.


quizbot
Participant
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@mick: it would be easier to comment on your posts if you didn’t edit them mid thought. Holland isn’t Pgh.

Also: maybe I’d ride slower without a helmet, but I’m not going to test it out.


Mick
Participant
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@quizbot it would be easier to comment on your posts if you didn’t edit them mid thought.

It woudl be much harder to read my posts if I didhnt’ go back and correct spelling.

But you are right, I should add a new post when I add material or change anything substantial.

Here’s an excellent site on the whole controversy.

http://www.cyclehelmets.org/1139.html

A couple of excerpts that stuck me.

From the “Ethics” section

Medical research into helmets has assumed that cycling is comparatively risky; there never was any significant risk assessment completed to justify helmet promotion. This represents a serious failure of due diligence. It is now known that previously sedentary people who start regular cycling may expect to enjoy reductions in mortality rates greater than after giving up cigarette smoking. Since the actual risks of cycling fall in the same range as for walking and driving, helmet promotion directed only at cyclists should be recognised as a serious threat to healthy public perceptions.

In addition, it is misleading to publish only a subset of the evidence when the wider evidence might lead to a different conclusion, but this has sometimes been the case. There is a lot of emotional association with helmet research and some researchers may be too committed to a particular outcome to allow them to be as dispassionate as good scientific research requires.

Publication bias is a problem that affects all research, whereby papers are only offered for publication and then published if they support the ‘right conclusions’, whether this be to meet the prejudices of the authors or publishers or established societal norms. Sometimes published helmet research has given more prominence to speculation about helmet benefits than to much stronger evidence that is less supportive of helmet use.


Mick
Participant
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Another excerpt. Old study, though. I’m a little skeptical about finding 1/2 million injuries or death per year associated with cycling in the 70’s and 80’s but this is what the Bicycle Helmet Research Foundation site says:

As early as 1988 Rodgers studied 8 million cases of injury or death to cyclists in the USA over 15 years – the largest survey of its kind ever undertaken. He concluded that there was no evidence that hard shell helmets had reduced head injury or fatality rates. Indeed, he found that helmeted riders were more likely to be killed.

I’m going to repeat this because someone asked for a cite of a study that showed helments to be a danger:

Indeed, he found that helmeted riders were more likely to be killed.

…helmeted riders were more likely to be killed.

I have yet to read that original paper of Rodgers’s. I can only find the abstract on line, but it indeed, says:

In fact, using Petty’s helmet data, bicycle data, bicycle-related fatalities are positively and significantly associated with increased helmet use.

http://md1.csa.com/partners/viewrecord.php?requester=gs&collection=ENV&recid=2043921&q=rogers+%22bicycle+accidents%22&uid=1006125&setcookie=yes

Caveat: I believe the helmets used them had a very different construction from modern helmets. Today’s fashion accessories might be less hazardous.

I want to reiterate something from Bicycle Helmet Research Foundation overview page:

http://www.cyclehelmets.org/1139.html

Since the actual risks of cycling fall in the same range as for walking and driving, helmet promotion directed only at cyclists should be recognised as a serious threat to healthy public perceptions.

It’s widely regarded here (and in our society) as being a good thing to say “You should have your helmet on!”

We need to examine that feel-good statement, because it might be hurting our community.


Mick
Participant
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@quizbot maybe I’d ride slower without a helmet, but I’m not going to test it out.

No need to test it physically. Just ask yourself, when in heavy traffic or going down a hill, “Would I be safe doing this without a helmet?”

If the answer is no, then you are not being safe.


Marko82
Participant
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@mick: I haven’t looked at all your links, but I do recall that you *do* where a helmet most days, no? I think that most studies can be manipulated to any conclusions that the author chooses to hypothesize (and I use to do statistics for a living). That’s what keeps the NRA and big-pharma in business, and why 99% of statistics is wrong 50% of the time. My personal belief is that a helmet is most useful in a very low speed, oops I forgot to unclip my shoes type of accident. A two-ton car hitting you at any speed – it probably doesn’t matter what you are wearing very much. My likelihood of being in the former, vs. the latter, is very high (in my experience), therefore I where a helmet when I ride. Plus I don’t want one of the local reporters to comment on how I was run over by a drunk driver going three times the posted speed limit, while texting his girlfriend, but hey, he wasn’t wearing a helmet so it’s the cyclist’s fault story in the newspaper.

Now back to our regularly scheduled debunkery…


Steven
Participant
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Mick, the first study you cited is very interesting, and seems to be using sensible methodology. I think it makes a strong case that the effectiveness of helmet laws in preventing serious brain injuries is, at best, too small to easily measure.

But that’s not quite the same question as whether encouraging helmet use reduces head injuries. As the study itself says “Helmeted cyclists in collision with motor vehicles had much less serious non-head injuries than non-helmeted cyclists (suggesting lower impact crashes).” This is partly because voluntarily helmeted riders do other safe things, but the study didn’t directly address how much of it was due to voluntary helmet use. For instance, it could be that if you can convince people to voluntarily wear helmets, that encourages them to wear bright clothing too, or use lights. On the other hand, a legal requirement for helmet use might just result in unsafe people doing the minimum to comply with the law: an ill-fitting unbuckled helmet, say.

Also, since the study only looked at hospital records, it’s silent on the effect of helmet use on less serious injuries.

And it’s a bit odd that the evidence shows declining head injury rates as helmet laws were introduced, but the author says they didn’t decline fast enough, and would have declined anyway. It would be more convincing if the head injury rate were stable during the introduction of helmet laws, not quickly falling due (presumably) to other causes.

The study’s claim of decreased bike use from helmet laws is worrisome, but less convincing. Cycling rates naturally rise and fall over time, just due to certain sports or activities becoming trendy. That could account for the substantial decrease they observed.

The study looks at rates of cycling to work over time, which went from 1.1% to 1.6% before the law, and to 1.2% after it. It concludes that helmet laws stopped an upward trend. But it could be that the 1.6% was just due to cycling getting trendy for a while.

So I’d say the evidence that helmet laws are effective in preventing serious injuries is very poor (they probably don’t), and legislatures should focus on drunk-driving, speeding, and other things to improve bike safety.

But where’s the evidence that individuals voluntarily wearing helmets discourages cycling use, or that it doesn’t really reduce head injury rates (since we know that cyclists wearing helmets get fewer serious head injuries)?

Has there ever been any good research on the effect on others of an individual voluntarily wearing a helmet? Does it convince people that biking is unsafe, causing them to avoid biking? Or does it encourage them to practice safer cycling, using lights, and wearing high visibility clothing (which we know is correlated with helmet use)? (Similarly, do use-a-helmet campaigns measurably decrease bike use? Do they encourage other safe practices?) Without that kind of data, I don’t think you can conclude based on any solid evidence that you’re harming anyone by wearing a helmet.

If that were true, though, how come brain injury rates are not much higher in helmet-free Holland?

Differences in rates of speeding and drunk-driving could account for it. Or the percentage of cyclists who follow traffic laws, or who use a light at night. Or a great many other things. You can’t get useful data when you change hundreds of variables at once (as when comparing Holland to here).

Helmets give people a sense that they are a little safer than not having a helmet. That sense of safety, where none exists, is incredibly dangerous.

The paper you cited suggests just the opposite. “Cyclists who choose to wear helmets commit fewer traffic violations” and “Helmeted cyclists in collision with motor vehicles had much less serious non-head injuries than non-helmeted cyclists (suggesting lower impact crashes).” In other words, people who choose to wear helmets are more likely to have other good safety practices, not less, and this is part of what results in their lower injury rates.


edmonds59
Participant
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@quizbot – I propose “Bell’s Law of Helmet”; any invocation of the word “helmet” on an Internet message board thread of any topic initiates a pro/con discussion in the form of an infinite loop, only rarely successfully terminated by the input “we agree to disagree”. Exception: citation of “Viking helmet”.


edmonds59
Participant
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I think the reason more scientific testing hasn’t been done on Viking helmets is that, if you drop a weight of any size from any height, the Viking will beat your ass down and take your woman. And beer.


BradQ
Participant
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If you think this discussion is bad you should see the mail I get accusing me of doing “less than the best for the human race” in one instance by publishing a magazine that features riders choosing not to wear helmets, and writing that even though I always have worn a helmet I do not equate the choice to not wear one as a death wish.


AtLeastMyKidsLoveMe
Participant
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Back to the opera pic… they don’t need helmets. Looks like they’re gonna need condoms, though.


ejwme
Participant
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yoi.

Look at what I missed by going to the symphony. I’m going to see if Sunday performances are any easier to bus to/from (preliminary indications are that 5PM on a Sunday is also “too late”, though maybe easier to bike).

We’ve got tix next to Turandot – an Italian opera, set in china, based on a french translation of a persian story of a turkish princess. While it starts off with a decapitation, it apparently ends happily.

(not to start it up again, but I like to use a helmet to hold my blinkies and the earmuffies my sister knitted me, and to keep people from yelling at me – no matter the noggin protection factor, it’s great for those aspects)


ieverhart
Participant
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@ Ejwme – While there is a chicken/egg factor here (nobody rides the bus late at night, because there is no bus, which is why nobody rides it…), your complaint seems most properly directed at your neighbors with their low demand for transit service, rather than exclusively Port Authority. Most nights the last 71A leaves downtown for the East End around 2:00 a.m., and the EBA’s last trip is around 1:00 a.m. Plenty late for near any event.

And if you count the cost of driving as 50 cents a mile (as do most institutions doing reimbursement for costs), even $5 parking may tip the balance in favor of transit.


ejwme
Participant
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Oh, PAT doesn’t get the brunt of my displeasure, by any means. But when I start to indulge in too much judgement on my suburbanite neighbors, their SUVs, their lawns, and their hatred of The City and my hippy ways, I start to wonder too hard why I live where I live, why I don’t live where I want, and then have to mentally detail the Escape Plan over and over again in my head to regain a little sanity.


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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Seriously, if I was 30ish and could swing a mortgage, I’d buy *two* run-down houses in a run-down part of the East End, tear down the lesser one, make the first one habitable, live in it until I’ve built a good house on the other lot, move into it, tear down the first, build a good house on it, and rent it out. By the time this is all done, gas will be $7/gallon, and people will be clamoring for decent housing in the city, and guess where you’re sitting?


cdavey
Participant
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@stu +1, and AMEN, brother!! I decided years ago that it made more sense to live in town so I didn’t have to drive to work and everywhere else.

When I tell people that the old inner cities are going to revive and be the next big place to live, they usually look at me like I have sprouted two heads and am talking in an alien language. I patiently wait….


Mick
Participant
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@marko I think that most studies can be manipulated to any conclusions that the author chooses to hypothesize (and I use to do statistics for a living

I’m a statistician. I make my living writing papers on the saety (or lack thereof) of some anesthetic procedures. I occasionally give workshops to physican researchers on statistics and data interpretation.

Until I started reading the literature, i believed that helmets dramatically increased safety. I dismissed those who said otherwise as flakes and so, for a long time, didn’t read the literature.

It is puzzling to me that helmet do not seem to be measurable protection. I can’t think of a good explanation for that that is borne out by the lit.

Steven is right – some studies show that helment users get fewer non- head injuries. Why? Not from helmet-based protection.

Two questions I can’t really answer, ans they really bug me:

Why DON”T helmets provide measurable protection?

The standards for bike helmets aren’t good standards for preventing serious injuries, but they still should provide enough protection to make an easily measured difference. They don’t.

The second question is: Why is so much time and energy spent on helmet promotion? Even by people that should know better.

The science doesn’t justify it. But no conspiracy theory makes sense to me.

I rode on the street without a helmet today. The first time I did that deliberatley in this century.

I though it would feel unsafe. It didn’t.

My impression (after maybe 15 minutes of helfet-free riding) is it’s noticably easier to be aware of all the movement around me without a helmet.

So far, against my expectations, no one has yelled “Get a helmet” at me.


edmonds59
Participant
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“…some studies show that helmet users get fewer non- head injuries. Why? Not from helmet-based protection. “

I can throw out one wild guess, and I’m being serious, this is not my usual idiocy. It may be that people who have a tendency to wear helmets are implicitly more safety concious (maybe older?), be less likely to take risks, may ride more safely overall, and may be less likely to get injured in general.

As to why helmet promotion? My only comments are – aside from any actual data, it seems intuitively like a helmet should prevent head injuries, and people are more that ready to make quick emotional decisions rather than check actual facts; and people are quick to accept easy silver bullet solutions instead of working through complex, multi-faceted problems.

Plus it’s a THING to SELL.


Erica
Participant
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I don’t know if its because I rode without a helmet for so long before buying one, but there doesn’t seem to be any noticeable difference in how I ride, whether positive or negative. Well, I take the lane more often (positive), but that was starting before I bought the helmet.


Marko82
Participant
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Mick, I’ll try and take the time to read the studies you cited. Does anyone know when and for what reasons pro racing made helmets mandatory? I know it’s only been in the last decade or two. Maybe they were getting pressure from the great helmet-industrial-complex?


dwillen
Participant
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Say you had to run full speed and slam your head into a wall, and could do so with or without a helmet, which would you select? Now how about if there was some marginally meaningful statistics showing it didn’t make a difference either way?

In addition to possibly saving my brain, in the winter, my helmet helps keep my skull cap and neck gaiter in place, keeping me warm. I have both a headlight (so I can light up whatever I look at) and a red blinky on my helmet — those combined with the bright yellow color and reflectors on the helmet, give me the feeling that the drivers see me just a little better. I also recently added a mirror, so I can see cars behind me.

If I ditched my helmet, and all this other crap, would I feel more safe? would I have more awareness and be more visible? Absolutely not.


reddan
Keymaster
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Say you had to run full speed and slam your head into a wall, and could do so with or without a helmet, which would you select?

(I always hate that particular rhetorical question. My usual response: “Would your answer differ if you were on a bike, in a car, walking down stairs, or in the shower? Look up the relative incidence of each case with regards to traumatic brain injury, then explain why cycling should be treated differently…”)

That aside, I wear a helmet for pretty much the same reasons as Dan. Good place to keep secondary lights and reflective bits, and a helmet cover adds a lot of warmth in cold weather.

I do sympathize with Mick’s point re: awareness of environment sans helmet, though. I suspect different helmets have different impacts in that area: my old Trek helmet, for whatever reason, felt like it dulled my hearing and peripheral perception a great deal. When I replaced it with my current Bell Metro, the difference was significant…the Metro didn’t seem to impact my senses at all. Dunno why…differences in airflow, perhaps?


dwillen
Participant
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If it were socially acceptable to wear a helmet in a car and walking around Oakland, I’d probably just leave it on :) So no, my answer wouldn’t really change.


Erica
Participant
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That would eliminate embarrassing sweaty helmet hair (something I cope with daily, because my hair is naturally oily), at least until you go home :)


Steven
Participant
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Steven is right – some studies show that helment users get fewer non- head injuries. Why? Not from helmet-based protection.

I certainly didn’t mean to say all of that. Perhaps I expressed myself poorly.

The first part is certainly true: helmet users get fewer head injuries.

But why? I don’t think we know that. At least, there’s no good evidence I could find in the links Mick posted that address this question. There are various poorly designed studies though, and other researchers tearing apart the poorly designed studies.

But the fact that there are studies that show helmets prevent injuries, but the studies are poorly designed, doesn’t mean helmets don’t help. They might or might not. The bad studies just don’t provide useful info on the question.

So it could be that helmets are like an “I Bike Safely” sticker you apply to your head. Naturally, people with the sticker also bike more safely, so they get fewer head injuries. But the sticker isn’t preventing the injuries.

But it could also be true that, among people who bike safely in other ways, adding a helmet makes them even safer, whereas forcing unsafe cyclists to wear a helmet makes them take more foolish risks, so they’re in more danger. That might explain the results in the British study that found mandatory helmet laws didn’t reduce head injuries.

Or there could be many other explanations for the very few research-supported facts we actually know.

Why DON”T helmets provide measurable protection?

We know they do on dummies in the lab. We know they don’t when forced on an entire population. We don’t know much about everything in between. Maybe they do, but we haven’t figured out when.

Why is so much time and energy spent on helmet promotion?

The result that they don’t work when forced on a population is counterintuitive. We don’t understand why mandatory helmet laws doesn’t work. And that result may not apply to merely promoting helmet use (again, we just don’t know).

Given how little we know, bike safety shouldn’t be focusing on helmets before all else. Focus on lights, riding technique, all the rest. There’s no very clear harm (or benefit) with including helmets in the mix too.

My helmet likely kept my face from getting scratched up, a few years ago. I’ll keep wearing it, awaiting further research.


Erica
Participant
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Any studies on how safe Hairmets are?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0rGoWtF-hs


edmonds59
Participant
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I wear a helmet because I FEEL safer with one on than without, but that’s not based on research. I would probably not be tempted to hit 48 mph downhill on Steubenville Pike behind a truck. This year I’m going to get 50, I swear.

I also wear one because I want my kids to wear one and I don’t want to be a hypocrite. The kids don’t need to know about the 48 mph thing.

Wear a helmet if you want to wear a helmet, and don’t freak out if someone who is not your child doesn’t wear one.


AtLeastMyKidsLoveMe
Participant
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There is a lot of discussion currently in professional sports about concussions. As a result there is a lot of research being conducted on both what happens inside the cranium (brain) and without (helmet).

Football helmets, if you’ve never held one, are a significantly heavier-duty piece of equipment, with thicker plastic, different types of foam cushioning – and even a type with inflatable air bladders to soften the impact.

But the technology of the helmet is really secondary to the primary cause of the concussion: the the skull atop the body moving at a high rate of speed decelerates immediately upon contact (either with another player or the field surface, etc.), that “stopping” of the skull causes the brain to crash forward into the inside of skull, and voila! You have a concussion.

Certainly the football helmet prevents surface injury, but the big deal is concussion prevention, and current helmets don’t quite measure up.

Similarly, I suspect that bicycle helmets will prevent surface injury, but given the relatively lightweight construction (especially compared to motorcycle or football helmets), I find it hard to believe they could provide any meaningful protection against significant head injury (ie: concussion, etc.). However, I have no data to support my conclusions.

And, having said all that, I’ll still wear one.


Steven
Participant
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I think the cushioning in a helmet is supposed to lengthen the impact time, which reduces the maximum acceleration and helps to prevent the concussion. The hard shell is for surface protection, but all the cushioning is there for concussion.

I’m guessing that whatever the issue with helmet effectiveness, it’s not in the design or the physics (things that are easy to study in a lab) but in some societal or behavioral impact (harder to study).


ejwme
Participant
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Stu – ironically, I started my professional life living in Squirrel Hill. I moved to Penn Hills to halve my commute and eliminate the tunnel, because I worked in Monroeville. I couldn’t find a job in the city.

My place of employment has since moved from the suburbs to the exurbs. Some employers are stuck in that 1950’s mindset that produced the suburbs. These employers are keeping thousands of people out there – some happily (a handful of my neighbors), some not so much (like me).

I truly have to wonder at any larger company’s motives and sanity when telecommuting isn’t mandatory (for office workers). The infrastructure is there, the benefits SHOULD outweigh any ridiculous managerial “warm fuzzies” received at the sight of worker bees bent over keyboards. Overhead dissappears into salaries, workers don’t get stuck in traffic, life just gets easier for everyone.

(end gripe, thank you)


Mick
Participant
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@dwillen In addition to possibly saving my brain, in the winter, my helmet helps keep my skull cap and neck gaiter in place, keeping me warm

On my second day of helmet-free riding, I am finding that to be true. Hat-hoodie-helmet is pretty warm.

It might even be a safety issue: If I have my hoodie up, then with the helmet, the hoodie moves out of the way whan I turn to look behind me. Without the helmet it doesn’t.


AtLeastMyKidsLoveMe
Participant
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From the Interwebs: “Bike helmets are a proven lifesaver. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 98 percent of bicyclists killed in 1999 weren’t wearing helmets. In the event of a crash, wearing a bicycle helmet reduces the risk of serious head injury by as much as 85 percent.”

No mention of how many of those 98% were wearing Viking helmets. However, one anecdotal reference identified a crash involving a Viking who collided with a semi-truck, jumped up off the pavement, chewed the tires off the rig, pulled the driver out of the cab and beat him to within an inch of his life (with his u-lock, apparently), then ran off, dragging the trucker’s female companion.


eMcK
Participant
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Steven, very thooughtful and well reasoned posts.

The other thing that needs to be considered here is the application of all this data to your personal choice to wear a helmet. You are not the population as a whole, you are one person, riding a bike. Do you believe wearing a helmet will make you less like to to be seriously hurt (or killed) in the case of an accident?

Only you can take into account risk compensation, riding skill, etc…


salty
Participant
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@edmonds – what’s the optimal place to do that, do you think? iirc i was able to hit 45-46 around primanti’s going eastbound, but no more. i was *not* drafting a car at those speeds, which is definitely out of my comfort zone.

i had my suspicions that higher speeds were possible westbound, i.e downhill from around strathmore, but that hill sketched me out a lot more with the curve and the lights at the bottom and whatnot. i think i’d maybe hit 40-42 before i felt the urge to slow down.

in any case, i’m not sure a helmet is going to do a lot of good at those speeds, especially if a car/truck is involved… but i always wear one anyways.

i’d like to hit 50 too – i’m not sure i ever have… not sure what the right place to do it is, though. i think i remember topping 40 on my MTB on panther hollow, so that might be worth a shot.


edmonds59
Participant
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From the 79 intersection/Kings going eastbound toward Crafton. There are no side roads coming in until Primanti’s, and then again until the hill flattens out, so you don’t have that to worry about.

Going westbound from Strathmore, no, with the curve and lights, no sight line, possible left crossers, no good.


edmonds59
Participant
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I suppose I should have been a little more vague about that. In the event someone was to try such a thing, which one shouldn’t, that might be one way to do that. Or not. :)


ejwme
Participant
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I’m still trying to wrap my head around “if you wouldn’t go that fast without a helmet, you’re not being safe anyway” or however one paraphrases whoever said that (I’m lazy, sorry).

I can usually, if I know the route ok, don’t have a wardrobe or bike malfunction, and don’t take a “where does this go” detour, I match the google maps cycling directions “cycling time”. That averages me out at about 10mph, which is pretty slow. But that’s chugging really slowly up some stupidly steep/long hills, and pedalling fast as I can down the other side.

I’m sitting here wondering how slow I would go if I removed the helmet, and if that would really change my averages a significant amount – or would it be balanced by my getting stronger in general for the flats and uphills? And as I bike more, will my perception of “safe” shift faster? When I first started, I was leaning on the brakes down every hill, until I realized inertia was my friend on the uphills, and exhaustion overcame fear.

Safety question aside, it’s an interesting point to ponder. I have no doubt that the helmet does not magically make faster safer. But I wonder what’s magically shifting my *perception* of safety, helmet or no.

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