Sunday, September 30, 2012

Helmets hurt bicycle utilization

Here's an interesting article arguing that helmet laws hurt bicycle usage. Quote from the article: "Pushing helmets really kills cycling and bike-sharing in particular because it promotes a sense of danger that just isn’t justified" The idea here seems to be that helmet regulations complicate adoption rates of bicycling programs (who wants to carry a helmet around all the time?), and that even though a helmet does protect in some crashes, those type of accidents are very rare. The net health benefits of exercise, reduced traffic congestion, and the like are estimated to be far more beneficial than cost of requiring helmets. When I was younger I used to ride my bike quite a bit, but where I live now - I think I'd get killed if I took a bike off of my street.

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