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Why do people care so much about other people wearing helmets?

Every time helmets get mentioned a crowd of people come out frothing at the mouth to declare that they're a big boy who doesn't want to wear a helmet. Why is it such a touchy subject?

If you're new please join in and if you have questions pop them below and the forum regulars will answer as best we can.

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93 comments

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BBB | 1 year ago
3 likes

"Why do people care so much about other people wearing helmets?""
You got it the wrong way round.

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andy753 | 1 year ago
0 likes

Well, this is an interesting one. I remember being very against helmets as a teenager and thought that they were very uncool. UNTIL I got knocked off my bike on the South Circular in London in about 1990. I then wore a helmet every day after that... remember those helmets with fabric covers over the top? LOL I think this perception often stems back to our childhood.

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Judge dreadful | 1 year ago
1 like

Personally, I don't care what anyone else does or doesn't do, regarding helmet use. I use a helmet, because I found out ( the hard way ) what happens if you get brought down at a speed exceeding walking pace, with , and then without a decent lid  ( long story ). It's personal choice, until the law is changed ( I can't see that happening ).

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brooksby | 1 year ago
6 likes

Dear road.cc admins

Please can you give Martin73 and Rendel Harris their own forum to play in?

Thanks!

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Rendel Harris replied to brooksby | 1 year ago
7 likes

I apologise for getting somewhat swept up in the trolling, unfortunately when somebody throws my name into a discussion for no purpose whatsoever and then attempts to make spiteful and untrue comments about my relationship with my wife I am not of a nature to take that lying down.

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perce replied to Rendel Harris | 1 year ago
4 likes

No need to apologise, I don't know how you put up with it. It's tiresome.

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brooksby replied to Rendel Harris | 1 year ago
2 likes

You know, that's happened before with a user who was definitely a different person behind the keyboard, hasn't it...?

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chrisonabike replied to Rendel Harris | 1 year ago
3 likes

I prefer to take it lying down - less strain on the knees and circulatory systems.

But then I do ride a recumbent sometimes.

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mattw replied to brooksby | 1 year ago
1 like

We can follow the idea of Ship of Fools and call it "Hell".

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Hirsute replied to mattw | 1 year ago
3 likes

I did suggest something like that last year - they have a section for dead horses where you can flog them.

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BalladOfStruth replied to brooksby | 1 year ago
5 likes

Or better yet, implemet the user profile/post history/ignore list functionality we've been asking for forever, so we can just not see posts from the people with nothing constructive to add, who only come here to stir shit. Seriousy Admins, do want me to code it for you?

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wtjs replied to BalladOfStruth | 1 year ago
5 likes

so we can just not see posts from the people with nothing constructive to add that only come here to stir shit

I suppose this would make things marginally easier, but it really is simple to ignore comments from the usual, very obvious suspects and comments responding to them, and topics initiated by them!

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Hirsute replied to BalladOfStruth | 1 year ago
1 like

Already possible with ublock origin. My list is quite long now.

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ChuckSneed replied to brooksby | 1 year ago
1 like

Sorry I'm somewhat new to the comments and forum. Can someone explain to me who they are and what they've done wrong? I can see a lot of angry comments but I don't have a context.

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Hirsute replied to ChuckSneed | 1 year ago
3 likes

Sure Jan

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brooksby replied to ChuckSneed | 1 year ago
4 likes

ChuckSneed wrote:

Sorry I'm somewhat new to the comments and forum. Can someone explain to me who they are and what they've done wrong? I can see a lot of angry comments but I don't have a context.

But any child knows this.

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Hirsute replied to brooksby | 1 year ago
2 likes

brooksby wrote:

ChuckSneed wrote:

Sorry I'm somewhat new to the comments and forum. Can someone explain to me who they are and what they've done wrong? I can see a lot of angry comments but I don't have a context.

But any child knows this.

You've made my day brooksby !

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brooksby replied to Hirsute | 1 year ago
1 like

hirsute wrote:

brooksby wrote:

ChuckSneed wrote:

Sorry I'm somewhat new to the comments and forum. Can someone explain to me who they are and what they've done wrong? I can see a lot of angry comments but I don't have a context.

But any child knows this.

You've made my day brooksby !

yes

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chrisonabike replied to brooksby | 1 year ago
2 likes

Please?!  There has to be another bridge on the internet?

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NotNigel | 1 year ago
7 likes

...

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Jimmy Ray Will | 1 year ago
13 likes

I am interested by the post title, but far less interested in the subtutle context.

Why do people care so much about other people wearing helmets?

1. Motorists

For motorists, I think its because a cyclist wearing a helmet dilutes the level of responsibility a driver feels for that cyclist. 'It's OK if I should knock him off as he won't be killed because... helmets' 

Likewise, cyclists not wearing a helmet is grating for many motorists as they perceive the cyclist to be not taking responsibility for their safety and therefore the motorist has to assume full responsibility for their own actions; 'stupid cyclist, I could kill him if I knock him off'

If you have an opportunity, stop and think about how twisted that logic is!

2. Helmet Wearing Cyclists

Let's be honest, in an ideal world none of us would wear cycling helmets. By that I mean we wouldn't feel the sport was dangerous, our riding skills aren't going to let us down at any minute and our bikes aren't going to suddenly fail. Helmets wouldn't be 'needed'.

Alas that's not the case... or maybe, just maybe it is? Nearly everytime we ride, we don't fall off. Our bikes don't fail, everything goes swimmingly. Perhaps cycling isn't this wild ride, avoiding certain death at every turn, that we are told it is.

When wearing helmets, many feel it is the right thing to do, indeed the only thing to do. Therefore when they see a cyclist without a helmet on, cycling, living, thriving, it challenges their viewpoint.

Cycling evangelists aren't passionate about saving non-helmet wearers from certain death, they simply want to stop people challenging their personal beliefs.

3 Non-cycling others

Cycling makes sense on so many levels; its healthy, convenient, liberating and even fun. So why do so many people still not do it? Because they can't be bothered.

To these people, the helmet is a perfect talisman for why cycling is bad and enables them to continue ignoring common sense and the bicycle. A helmet represents danger... cycling is dangerous; it represents discomfort and inconvenience... it'll ruin my hair, where do I keep my helmet when I'm out?; it represents stupidity... cycling and cyclists look naff. 

Much like helmet wearing evangelists, when seeing a cyclist without a helmet, it challenges their viewpoint. They want cyclists to wear helmets so that they can continue to justify not cycling. 

Flipping that around, why are non helmet wearers so passionate about refuting pro-helmet adoption? Its because helmets compromise our safety in traffic, they perpetuate a false narrative around cycling dangers, and they put non-cyclists off cycling. 

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chrisonabike replied to Jimmy Ray Will | 1 year ago
6 likes

Thread created by a wind-up merchant - although there have been some thoughtful rejoinders this was always unlikely to be a profitable exercise!

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Beatnik69 replied to Jimmy Ray Will | 1 year ago
2 likes

Jimmy Ray Will wrote:

I am interested by the post title, but far less interested in the subtutle context.

Why do people care so much about other people wearing helmets?

1. Motorists

For motorists, I think its because a cyclist wearing a helmet dilutes the level of responsibility a driver feels for that cyclist. 'It's OK if I should knock him off as he won't be killed because... helmets' 

Likewise, cyclists not wearing a helmet is grating for many motorists as they perceive the cyclist to be not taking responsibility for their safety and therefore the motorist has to assume full responsibility for their own actions; 'stupid cyclist, I could kill him if I knock him off'

If you have an opportunity, stop and think about how twisted that logic is!

 

Also, if I have to wear a seatbelt, you should have to wear a helmet

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Steve K replied to Beatnik69 | 1 year ago
4 likes

Beatnik69 wrote:

 

Also, if I have to wear a seatbelt, you should have to wear a helmet

Which seems to be the basis of so many of motorists' gripes about cyclists - I have to do x, so you should have to do x or something a bit like it.  No recognition that a car and a bike are rather different things.

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Daveyraveygravey replied to Beatnik69 | 1 year ago
3 likes

[/quote]

Also, if I have to wear a seatbelt, you should have to wear a helmet

[/quote]

 

Except you are statistically more likely to bang your head behind the steering wheel of your car than on your pushbike...so you should wear a seatbelt AND helmet when driving...

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ShutTheFrontDawes replied to Daveyraveygravey | 1 year ago
0 likes
Daveyraveygravey wrote:

Also, if I have to wear a seatbelt, you should have to wear a helmet

[/quote]

 

Except you are statistically more likely to bang your head behind the steering wheel of your car than on your pushbike...so you should wear a seatbelt AND helmet when driving...

[/quote]

I don't think that's true. Statistics have been posted on this thread already that show that cycling has a much higher rate of head injury per distance travelled than a car.

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ChrisB200SX replied to ShutTheFrontDawes | 1 year ago
1 like

ShutTheFrontDawes wrote:
Daveyraveygravey wrote:

Also, if I have to wear a seatbelt, you should have to wear a helmet

 

Except you are statistically more likely to bang your head behind the steering wheel of your car than on your pushbike...so you should wear a seatbelt AND helmet when driving...

[/quote] I don't think that's true. Statistics have been posted on this thread already that show that cycling has a much higher rate of head injury per distance travelled than a car.[/quote]Injuries per distance travelled is meaningless metric (especially comparing motorvehicles to bicycles), people don't lives their lives by distance, except Dominic Turetto.

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ShutTheFrontDawes replied to ChrisB200SX | 1 year ago
0 likes
ChrisB200SX wrote:

ShutTheFrontDawes wrote:
Daveyraveygravey wrote:

Also, if I have to wear a seatbelt, you should have to wear a helmet

 

Except you are statistically more likely to bang your head behind the steering wheel of your car than on your pushbike...so you should wear a seatbelt AND helmet when driving...

I don't think that's true. Statistics have been posted on this thread already that show that cycling has a much higher rate of head injury per distance travelled than a car.[/quote]Injuries per distance travelled is meaningless metric (especially comparing motorvehicles to bicycles), people don't lives their lives by distance, except Dominic Turetto.[/quote]

I don't have the numbers and frankly can't be bothered to look them up for the benefit of someone on the internet who made a claim without backing it up.

The figures quoted for car travel were so much lower that I would expect that even working by per time or even per trip, you'd still end up quids-in so to speak.

But like I said, I can't be bothered to check. Wycombe wheeler shared the study I think. Go look if you care enough.

PS turns out I can be bothered. By time, figures wereUsing time as the denominator, rates were "0.16 (0.14–0.19) [cycling] ,0.10 (0.10–0.11) [walking] and 0.03 (0.028–0.032) [driving] respectively in men and 0.10 (0.07–0.14), 0.04 (0.037–0.045), and 0.01 (0.012–0.016) respectively in women, per million hours travelled."

So yeah, way safer to drive from a head injury perspective.

It's almost like the more protection you have, the safer you are. Funny that.

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ChrisB200SX | 1 year ago
7 likes

You have this backwards. You either know this and ignore it, or are too dim to realise it. It is the group who thinks everyone should wear helmets that are the frothy-mouthed problem.

They just need to shut-up and let everyone make their own personal choice without spouting off about other people's freedom of choice. It really is that simple.

The question really is why is it such as touchy subject for the helmet evangalists, why can they not just mind their own business?

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ChuckSneed replied to ChrisB200SX | 1 year ago
0 likes

This kind of furious response what I was referring to

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