Powered pedal cycle in collision

Timco541

Just Joined
Aug 12, 2008
4
0
If your head is not worth protecting then don't bother, suit yourself. I cannot believe anyone would even argue that its safe to go around unprotected in this day and age. I always use protection.
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,494
23,312
If your head is not worth protecting then don't bother, suit yourself. I cannot believe anyone would even argue that its safe to go around unprotected in this day and age. I always use protection.
And that's exactly the sort of bad manners I mentioned earlier, referring to my head in that way. I haven't argued that it's safe, just that it's my business and not for boors like you to comment on.
.
 
Last edited:

Timco541

Just Joined
Aug 12, 2008
4
0
And that's exactly the sort of bad manners I mentioned earlier, referring to my head in that way. I haven't argued that it's safe, just that it's my business and not for boors like you to comment on.
.

I wasn't referring to your head in particular, it was a general comment. And I find your use of "bad manners" and "boors" quite uneccessary.
The difference between being concussed and a vegtable when brain hemispheres tear apart can sometimes be as little as 0.5g lateral acceleration to the head. Your choice.
 

The Maestro

Esteemed Pedelecer
May 15, 2008
296
0
I wasn't referring to your head in particular, it was a general comment. And I find your use of "bad manners" and "boors" quite uneccessary.
The difference between being concussed and a vegtable when brain hemispheres tear apart can sometimes be as little as 0.5g lateral acceleration to the head. Your choice.
I think that he's made it fairly clear that he already knows that its his choice ;)
 

Howard

Pedelecer
Jul 8, 2008
73
0
I am not preaching to anyone here who won't wear a helmet, you're entitled to your own opinions, as am I. But it saddens me that on a public forum somebody asks about cycle safety and the majority reply is that no-one wears a helmet. And coincidently none of the people who preach not wearing a helmet have actually been knocked off by a car. Interesting.
Just to add my own personal experience (not preaching to anyone though...). I was knocked off my bike a few years ago - a car pulled out of a side turning straight in front of me, I was doing about 20mph on the main road. They just didn't see me. I was thrown over the car landing somewhere the other side unconscious. My helmet was destroyed during the accident, apparently on impact with the road according to witnesses. My head was OK. Who knows what would have happened if I hadn't been wearing a helmet? I, for one, will always wear a helmet.
 

Phil the drill

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jun 14, 2008
395
6
TR9
Bicycle helmets

Hi folks, I sense this one is hotting up a little....
I think one point that is worth raising here is that there is very little evidence that cycle helmets offer any significant protection.
Motorcycle helmets are subject to compulsory and relatively stringent testing, and this has recently been enhaced by the introduction of the 'SHARP' grading system. They do offer significant protection against trauma, but NOT against acceleration/deceleration internal injuries, or rotational neck injuries, which they can potentially exacerbate. These are the injuries which kill most, and helmet wearing can actually worsen these under certain circumstances. Cosmetically the victim looks much prettier than they would otherwise, but that is often more for the benefit of the trauma staff and the unfortunate relatives.
In case you are wondering where I am coming from here, I worked for 12 years as a maxillo-facial surgeon in various units around the country, before changing specialty several years ago.
I have often heard comments from colleagues like 'he/she might have survived if they were wearing a helmet'. These comments are usually based on nothing but baseless supposition that it could have prevented the fatal cause of the injury. This is usually a reaction to the very horrible cosmetic appearance of the non helmet wearing victim involved in a high speed collision (I assure you it really can be sickening, even when you are used to it) BUT In only a very few cases would a fatal outcome have actually been prevented. All motorcyclists wear helmets now, but the fatality rate is still very high amongst accident victims, mostly due to head and neck injuries, although as I said earlier this would often not be apparent on cursory examination. I would grant you that facial injuries have been greatly reduced, but terrible as they are to look at, they are rarely the cause of fatalities. Note that this applies to the use of FULL FACE motorcycle helmets.
In comparison cycle helmets have no effective standard, no meaningful stats to show whether or not they are effective and are very flimsy in construction. They offer no facial protection of note. The ventilation holes mean that they cannot guarantee protection against penetration injuries either. Helmets with full face protection used by downhill off road MTB users look more promising, but these are not useful to road users.
By all means wear a helmet, it may help stop nasty grazes on the forehead from slides, but don't get a false sense of security from it, a good potentially fatal bang is likely to remain so helmet or not.
Sorry if you don't like to hear it guys, but it is true.
Cheers, Phil
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,494
23,312
I wasn't referring to your head in particular, it was a general comment. And I find your use of "bad manners" and "boors" quite uneccessary.
And an unnecessary and ill mannered general comment in which I was included by virtue of my previous posting. It's good to see that you don't like the same treatment.

You'll see I deleted the lecturing part of your last post in the quote, what is it about helmet wearers that they persist in this even when it's been made clear it's not wanted? Is that not boorish? Of course it is, and that makes my comment entirely necessary.
.
 
Last edited:

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,494
23,312
Thanks for your reasoned and entirely sensible post Phil. If only helmet wearers would just make their choice and live by it without bothering others, all would be fine. Unfortunately these pests even have the nerve to approach me when I'm parking my bike and want to start lecturing, and I've even suffered it while riding.
.
 

Phil the drill

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jun 14, 2008
395
6
TR9
Cheers, Flecc
Regrettably the problem of 'instant experts' is serious plague of gargantuan proportions which afflicts all aspects of modern life. It used to apply in the past too, but since we were all less 'PC' then we could get away with ignoring it more easily!
Whatever the 'cause' be it nuclear power, peak oil, climate change, wind turbines, GCSE grades, Toyota Prius' (Ihate them, the LEAST environmentally friendly car to inhabit the planet, when manufacture etc is taken into account and the most likely to run you or some innocent kid over - silently from behind!) and many other things besides....... we are forced to listen to those whose opinions are expressed with much more weight than could be remotely justified by their knowledge or experience. It's very trying, but inescapable - pass the Prozac!!
Phil
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,494
23,312
Watch out Phil, we have some Prius owners in the forum! :eek:

There was a two driver competition in the Prius tonight on "Fifth Gear", to see who could get the highest economy mileage. Both got just over 60 mpg, but I noted that the tyres were at 2.6 bar, which is very much on the hard side, around 2 bar being more common on today's cars.

Of course quite a few diesel cars would do the same using the same economy driving methods and hard tyres, so like you, I'm far from convinced by that complex and expensive technology.
.
 

felix

Pedelecer
Mar 16, 2008
37
7
My penniesworth on the helmet debate, no lecturing etc., each for their own:

At the tender age of 14 I witnessed an accident. A woman, about my mum's age at the time, came off her bike while traveling down a steep hill in town. It was raining.
She hit her head on the kerb and before I could get to her a crowd of grown ups surrounded the scene and I couldn't see what was happening. As I walked past - and this has stayed with me - I saw a stream of blood flowing down the gutter into a drain and I felt sick!

I never found out if she survived.

When I'm on my bike I wear a helmet.

Mike
 

Phil the drill

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jun 14, 2008
395
6
TR9
Hope I'm not going too far 'off thread', but here goes anyway......
My understanding is that the emissions produced by the production of the average car (including metal extraction, transport and plastics production (which also requires oil btw)) are in the order of 2-3 times more than those produced by the said car during it's entire working life. In the case of the Prius it's even worse as the production is so much more complex and energy ineffiecent. The batteries are an Nimh variant, which involves Ni mining, which is a terribly messy and polluting form of mining. In Canada, (the main producer of Nickel) this has caused enormous environmental damage to those areas.
Logic appears to dictate that the sensible way of reducing OVERALL emissions from cars is to stop (or at least reduce) the production of them. Energy efficient or not, it would be more sensible to modify and keep old cars going as long as possible (using technology to clean them up as much as possible), rather than try to force people to buy yet more cars (and have to dispose of more old ones). Besides how many people can actually afford to just change their cars everytime some new eco-fad is adopted by an ill-informed governement? Why not encourage people to hang on to their cars longer, and not buy new ones? Why not reduce road tax year on year to encourage this and load it on new ones, rather than penalise those who have nursed their cars on for many years, thereby actually doing us more good than if they kept on changing them?
Phil
 

peckerman

Finding my (electric) wheels
Aug 22, 2008
21
0
Oh this thread just gets better. So basically, thread starts about an unfortunate cyclist who has an accident.

A member asks if she was wearing a helmet

Another member goes off on one about how wearing a helmet makes you more likely to have an accident

A couple of others put the point across that he may be wrong(shock)

We get slated for suggesting that....de de duh..... it might be a good idea to wear a helmet on a bike

Some people agree that it might be a little tiny bit safer to wear protection on the one organ in your body that controls everything......

A surgeon then falsely states there are no standards for cycle helmets( there is the EN standard at present moment) and that full face helmets dont offer much protection to motorcyclist. Motorcycle=up to 160mph, cycle= up to 25 mph. Its not rocket science.

Basically the only reason I piped up was as the original question raised by Intex wasnt answerd. I couldnt care less who does and doesn't wear one, I just think you're wrong suggesting that its safer to not wear one. Incidently, like I said, none of you guys have been knocked off, so you cant really argue that its safer not to wear one,thankfully you haven't had to find out. many years ago they thought the world was flat, until someone sailed around it.:eek:
 

lectureral

Esteemed Pedelecer
Apr 30, 2007
396
59
Suva, Fiji
I am firmly in the 'decide for yourself' camp. Maybe those that are in the other camp do not realise that the strength of feeling is enhanced by the likelihood of legislation coming our way. There was a Bill recently in our Parliament seeking to make helmets compulsory for under 14s and legislation has been passed in Western Australia with the unintended effect that cycling rates have dropped sharply. Important, then, that we register our opposition to compulsoriness. I know that some accidents are unavoidable but I ride very defensively so that the chances for a driver to hit me are much reduced. Interesting that so many non-wearers have never been knocked off their bike - anecdotal evidence perhaps that non-wearers are more careful?

Here in France there has been recent legislation requiring all cars to carry a fluorescent jacket and a triangle (I wonder whether the EU will think it's a good idea and force it on the UK one day). I have been surprised at how meekly (rather against stereotype) French drivers have submitted to the requirement to carry around bits of kit most of which will never get used - in fact about 50% of drivers seem to have decided, ridiculously, that the jacket should be on display and so have draped it over their passenger seat.
 
Last edited:

rooel

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jun 14, 2007
357
0
I agree too that all cyclists should be free to wear helmets, (and knee-pads, leggings, wet weather gear, etc) if they so choose. What I do object to is the propaganda in favour of wearing helmets, because, as stated above, I think it increases the dangers for all cyclists.

I would much prefer politicians, instead of posing at their photocalls wearing helmets, to do so instead without helmets, but on physically separated, properly designed cycleways, thereby to pass a message to highway authorities and their officials that that is the most effective way to separate cyclists from motor vehicles.

I hope everyone will at least agree that such a cycleway separates the two different classes of traffic much more effectively than a couple of centimetres of polystyrene. We have never expected motor vehicles to share the "ways" used by trains. Why do we expect cyclists and pedestrians to share "ways" with motor vehicles?

By the way, lectural, the latest I heard from France is that it is not only motorists who are required to carry reflective vests for use in an emergency, cyclists too are now to be compelled to wear them on unlit country roads. And I expect you know that helmet wearing is compulsory in Spain. Here is an extract from the CTC site which shows just how ridiculous it is :

Spanish helmet law – 2005.03
Can you tell me whether it is compulsory to wear helmets in Spain?

Graham Holt – email
It is – but with quite a lot of exceptions: like when it’s hot, steeply uphill, or a built-up area! You may like to argue that it's always hot in Spain (compared to chilly Britain) but it's probably wiser to carry a helmet with you to put on when stopped by the cops. They have a trick of confiscating front wheels, to prevent further infringement by bolshy extranjeros!

Chris Juden
 
Last edited:

Encantador

Pedelecer
Jul 18, 2008
45
0
I sometimes wear a helmet and sometimes not, so I suppose have a foot in both camps. I don`t however believe I ride any differently when wearing one, I certainly don`t suddenly believe I have become invincible.

There was a suggestion early on that not wearing a helmet makes you safer because presumably every driver that passes you on the road will a) See you, b) Notice you are NOTwearing a helmet and c) Make a concious (or subconcious) decision to allow you more room. I must say, I am not convinced that I want to leave my safety to the majority of car drivers out there.

There is also a suggestion that every helmet wearer is constantly attacking non wearers and trying to force his/her opinions on them. Broadly speaking, if this thread is anything to go by, the non wearers are not doing a bad job of that either.

And finally, a comment that seems to suggest that because you can`t protect your whole body, you shouldn`t bother protecting any of it. Mmmmmm, can`t quite get my head (pardon the pun) round that one either.
I know that given the choice of hitting my little toe on the front of a moving 4x4 or my head, I know which I would choose.
Makes you wonder why eggs are generally sold in protective boxes and potatoes are not, there must be a reason, I wonder what it might be.......

I am sure that anyone (in their right mind), if they knew for certain that the next time they were on their bike they were going to fall off and their head would hit the tarmac quite hard, given the option, would opt to wear a helmet. It may not do them a lot of good, but I don`t believe it would do them any harm either.

Safe cycling, with or without a helmet.

Segregation is never going to happen until there are enough `voting` cyclists out there to make a difference.
 
Last edited:

RedSkywalker

Pedelecer
Jun 16, 2008
87
0
many years ago they thought the world was flat, until someone sailed around it.:eek:
This assertion never fails to amuse me because it defies both logic and historical fact. There is not one shred of evidence to support it from any seafaring nation [including the UK] and lots to contradict it - so please..... no more flat earthers!
 

lectureral

Esteemed Pedelecer
Apr 30, 2007
396
59
Suva, Fiji
I didn't know that about Spain Rooel - although it is unlikely that I will stray across that border from here. I do often cross the border into Switzerland, though, and I think I should have a sticker showing that I have paid for that country's compulsory insurance. I had heard about the requirement for cyclists in France to fluoresce but I do not know when it comes into force or the details. Luckily I have a jacket in each of my cars now.
 

The Maestro

Esteemed Pedelecer
May 15, 2008
296
0
I think we all take calculated risks all the time, just going outside is a risk. I've personally calculated the risk of not wearing a helmet and I believe it to adds a vanishingly small amount of risk. No statistical or anecdotal evidence will ever prove that the habit of wearing a helmet offers any advantage to any individual person. To some people it may offer a bigger advantage, i.e. if they believe they are prone to falling off their bike onto their heads.

Apart from that, no matter what everyone says, making people wear helmets will put people off cycling. Many people are vane and people don't like the look of them and don't like the hassle of them, they are also an extra expense and they would rocket up in price if made compulsory just like motorcycle helmets did. The damage this would do in terms of people not getting the health benefits of exercise, e.g. reduced risk of heart attack etc. in my opinion outweighs the benefit of making them compulsory. It would be a small effect in itself but it would be just another of the long list of safety legislation that is making people increasingly inactive. Being an inactive couch potato is actually the biggest health problem faced by the UK.
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,494
23,312
I just think you're wrong suggesting that its safer to not wear one. Incidently, like I said, none of you guys have been knocked off, so you cant really argue that its safer not to wear one,thankfully you haven't had to find out.
No-one to my knowledge has suggested it's safer not to wear one, again a myth oft stated by helmet wearers in response to those who point out their limitations. We aren't anti, we just wish not to be subjected to such distortions.

And I repeat the reason that I haven't been knocked off in a lifetime of cycling is due to my attention to primary safety rather than worrying about secondary safety. An example:

Hardly any of the helmet wearing cyclists have a rear view mirror. How silly is that, riding the slowest moving vehicle which gets overtaken the most and rarely having the faintest idea of what's happening behind. I won't insult anyone's intelligence by listing all the many ways in which an adequate rear view mirror avoids the potential for accidents since I'm sure you can work that out for yourselves with a little thought.

It's the attention to avoiding the accidents in the first place that's a better way to spend money and time, and if someone wants to wear a helmet as well, that's fine by me. But while they continue to have their luridly described accidents and cite those as a reason why I should wear a helmet, I don't think they are in a position to advise anyone on anything to do with road safety.
.