Helmets

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druid13
Participant
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I remember reading in a book put out by Mountain Bike magazine many years ago how a fall from five feet can cause your brain to swell to the point where they literally have to cut into your skull to save you.And sometimes THAT does not even work. then your brain cannot get oxygen or proper blood flow…resulting in permanent damage if not outright death, … I ….wear a helmet. I also remember seeing the report on Liam Nieson’s wife literally dieing from a very simple fall on a ski slope and her head was unprotected…slow speed minimal fall…she died.

I agree the car comparison is beyond ridiculous. Far more auto accidents occur and I’d wager most of head injuries result from people not wearnig a belt. You can wreck a car at 40 mph and get out and walk away if you are lucky…a wreck at 40 on a bike …? You have no protection around you…less without a helmet.

Sorry I see no excuse to not wear one particularly if you bike at all in the city. That is plain insanity….insanity I see every single day unfortunately.

5 feet…? Hell I sit higher than 5 feet when I ride. Insane….


reddan
Keymaster
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Sorry I see no excuse to not wear one particularly if you bike at all in the city. That is plain insanity….insanity I see every single day unfortunately.

Sorry, I have to disagree. It’s not insanity to make different choices with regards to ones safety; it’s merely, well, different.

Is it insane that most of us helmet wearers do not wear motorcycle-grade helmets, even though they are more likely to protect our skulls from fracturing in a collision? Is it insane that we don’t all wear reflective vests and day-glo safety gear, even though it increases our chances of being seen on the roads? Is it insane that we don’t all have mirrors, to better see what’s overtaking us? Where are our neck braces and cervical collars, to help prevent broken necks? (Yeah, those are intended to be rhetorical questions…)

Falling from 5 feet, or the equivalent impact, can happen in a lot more circumstances on a day-to-day basis than riding a bike; why single out cycling?

Anyway, I’ve ranted enough. Peace, y’all, whatever your choice o’ headgear.


mark
Participant
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the only real benefit to wearing a bright orange huge helmet is that people call you the dude with the bright orange big helmet… what i’m saying is that it’s a fashion statement….


Nate
Participant
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WWDWTBOBHD ?


erok
Keymaster
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you know, when i lived in oakland, i would frequently jump on my bike to run over to the Rite Aid or some food place and go just the few blocks through my residential neighborhood to get something real quick. usually on these quick runs, i wouldn’t wear a helmet. i didn’t consider myself “going out riding,” merely taking a quick jaunt for a few blocks to get some potato chips.

i’m sure you’ve all done the same.


JCME
Participant
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Cute girls who ride bikes and don’t wear helmets are immediately less attractive. It says a lot about your character.


druid13
Participant
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OK maybe insanity is too strong a word….and maybe it IS a choice…but sorry I will never agree it is a wise one.

You could bring up day glow vests and mirrors and stuff but all of those things can be avoided by being a more aware rider….I constantly swivel my head to KNOW what is around me so I don’t need a mirror….I have other reflective material so I don’t need a vest.Those things can be compensated for in other ways. However, if I have a sudden accident from anything….brake cable snaps…car hits me…pothole endo….and I don’t have a helmet?…..there is no protection against a head injury…no replacement for that lack of protection….I just think the arguments against are kind of silly is all.

Sure you can fall and hit your head doing anything but I equate to being more like sports. Football players never wore helmets…then wore leather ones…Now wear very high tech stuff…injuries still happen, but at the speed of the game without them, you would have a bunch of dead guys on your hands…I don’t bike at lazy day speeds like people did in the 1890’s when women wore dresses with petticoats on bikes and gentlemen wore suits on bikes all with no helmet…most people I see are biking around town at speeds of 15-20 mph on average. If you are traveling that speed you are basically giving yourself absolutely no chance of survival if you have a head impact. There are too many stories of people being saved by a helmet and replacing it with a new one to justify NOT wearing one.

A whole other issue with Motorcycles….guys who don’t wear helmets there…Sorry but I am going to get harsh again…insane. Looking cool or feeling “free” or whatever excuse they use for not wearing…sorry not worth it.

Cute girls do look better with helmets…I agree.


bstephens
Participant
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Maybe not a law that says “You must wear a helmet,” but a law that says “You can bike on these roads IF you wear a helmet.”

I just think there should be more standards for cyclists that legitimately intend to “share the road.” Wearing a helmet is a requirement for that endeavor in my opinion.

I wear a helmet because I don’t want to die and to encourage others to wear them so they don’t die either. Simple.


erok
Keymaster
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i agree with druid’s last statement. but there’s a reason that helmet use is so low in places like copenhagen – cars don’t rule the streets and people feel safe. maybe i’m talking about something different and should stop derailing


druid13
Participant
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erok….exactly….the number of cars has alot to do with my feelings about this…you can’t suddenly expect Pittsburgh to become Copenhagen overnight…it’s just not going to happen…so if you want to ride in the city…be safe is all I am saying.

My brother recently had a pothole endo as I described above in NYC where he lives….fractured shoulder…head was fine because of his helmet,.. he was doing about 17 mph he guessed…now if that was enough to fracture his shoulder (leaving him to stay away from the gym and weights for 6 months) I can imagine what would have happened to his head on concrete had he been helmet-less…..his Lemond even got a bit messed up from it.


brian j
Participant
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but there’s a reason that helmet use is so low in places like copenhagen – cars don’t rule the streets and people feel safe.

I’m actually coming around to agree with this. Now, if I’m on an MTB, or going for a long/fast road ride, I’d wear my helmet, even I’d never see a car. I’ve crashed enough to know that a helmet in those circumstance is a Good Idea(tm). That said, if I didn’t have to deal with the sort I do, even when cruising around the neighborhood, I’d probably consider not wearing a helmet. A calculated risk, assuming that a brake cable/wheel/tire wouldn’t fail? Yeah, probably.


Lyle
Participant
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The reason that helmet use is so low in Copenhagen is that helmet use is low in Copenhagen.

The number of people who are true iconoclasts, willing to force their way upstream even though they know they’re the only fish doing it, is constantly low in every culture, place, or time.

“I feel safe”, is the same sort of “reasoning” that people use for owning gigantic SUVs. Not so much that they actually *are* safe, but being part of a crowd of similar fishies makes everyone feel safer.

Here, helmet use is not quite so high that everyone does it, and not quite so low that nobody does it, but it’s an unstable equilibrium.

IMHO, natch.


jakeliefer
Participant
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Last year I was riding down a steep hill on my fixed gear around 25mph when my foot came out of the pedal strap and my bicycle essentially turned into a lopsided gyroscope with no way to get my foot back in the pedal as the cranks spun away. At the time, I was big into the MASH videos and wanting to be a cool hipster, riding with no brakes and no helmet. Fortunately in the wreck I landed on my hip rather than my head. I busted up my phone, got some major road rash and took a trip to the ER for some X-Rays. I couldn’t walk very well for about 2 weeks, being completely bruised up but was otherwise fine.

After that wreck, I realized how bad it could have been if I landed on my head. It’s served as a wake up call for me and I always wear my helmet, even on short trips. I love bicycling and want to continue for the rest of my (hopefully) long life.

A year ago, people were constantly telling me ‘Wear your helmet!’ till they were blue in the face. All the nagging didn’t do a thing to get me to wear a helmet. It was the reality of the wreck that made me reconsider my priorities. I was fortunate enough to get in a major wreck without injuring my head and wake me up to the reality of the risk I was putting myself in.


druid13
Participant
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test


rachel_ding
Participant
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Hey! Just topping this to celebrate the wonders of the helmet. I do not mean to be in-your-face and I believe that wearing a helmet is a personal choice, but damn, you’re all too pretty to get your head smashed in.

Mine saved my noggin’ as it slammed into the windshield of a car a few weeks ago (If you want to know more about the accident, check under the picture). I have some other injuries, but at least my head doesn’t look like this:

In case you’re curious: At around 11:l5am on December 14th I was riding my bike in Lawrenceville, heading towards Downtown on Liberty Ave. I was riding in the bike lane (it actually stops right where I got hit, oddly enough), taking care not to go too fast on the hill as usual, and at 34th/Denny and Liberty (it’s just before the Herron light) a sedan made a sudden left turn into me. I hit the windshield, then the ground, and was taken to UPMC Mercy where I was treated for a broken wrist, sprained ankle, cut lip, road rash, and a concussion. Various parts on my beloved Bianchi are messed up, but as far as frame damage goes I have a bent seat-stay. The driver stopped, there is a police report, we’re both insured, and I am hoping things progress without too much drama. Friends have been amazing in helping me out over the past few weeks – many of them post here. Aside from having a sore ankle, I feel good and should be able to take my cast off in a week and get back on a bike (knock on wood).

Anyway, I’m healing quickly and I owe a lot of that to my lovely helmet.


rsprake
Participant
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Wow, glad you are OK.


rachel_ding
Participant
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thanks!

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