Researchers in Canada have determined that mandatory helmet laws have no impact on bicycling injury hospitalization rates. Other factors, namely mode share, were much more likely to affect the outcome.
At least this time we should be talking about infrastructure
by: Hilary Angus, momentummag.com
Main conclusions of investigation:
1. The analysis concluded that helmet legislation was not associated with hospitalization rates, including and specifically for injuries to the head, scout, skull, face or neck.
2. The factors that didn’t have a measurable impact were modal share and sex. “For all injury causes sex was associated with hospitalization rates; females had rates consistently lower than males.”
3. For traffic related injury causes, higher cycling mode share was consistently associated with lower hospitalization rates.
4. The authors suggest that transportation health policy makers who aim to reduce bicycle injuries should direct their focus to initiatives that increase cycling mode share and specifically rates of women cycling.
5. Mandatory helmet laws have already been proven to reduce rates of cycling by either their inconvenience and discomfort, and/or by creating a culture of fear around biking.
# # #
About the editor:
9, rue Gabillot, 69003 Lyon France
Bio: Educated as an international development economist, Eric Britton is an American political scientist, teacher and sustainability activist who has worked on missions and advisory assignments on all continents. Professor of Sustainable Development, Economy and Democracy at the Institut Supérieur de Gestion (Paris), he is also MD of EcoPlan Association, an independent advisory network providing strategic counsel for government and business on policy and decision issues involving complex systems, social-technical change, civil society and sustainable development. Founding editor of World Streets: The Politics of Transport in Cities | See Britton online at https://goo.gl/9CJXTh and @ericbritton