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(The New York Times)   Some cities are now encouraging people to ride bikes without wearing a helmet, because brain damage makes everything more fun and potato   (nytimes.com) divider line 215
    More: Stupid, prices, no pressure, docking station, potatoes, National Highway  
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8945 clicks; posted to Main » on 04 Oct 2012 at 8:36 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-10-04 08:35:10 AM
I wear a bike helmet because I know there people like me driving cars.
 
2012-10-04 08:37:17 AM
I don't get it. I thought potato was a number?
 
2012-10-04 08:37:39 AM
I'd like to comment on this, but I can't since I don't have a New York Times login.
 
2012-10-04 08:38:36 AM
That's the second paywall in ten minutes.
 
2012-10-04 08:38:48 AM
I wear a bike helmet because I was wearing one the day I flew off my bike, and I am not a potato, and that may be why.
 
2012-10-04 08:39:03 AM
This is no joke, I was in a bicycle accident once without a helmet and now I can't snail tea wreck good worm.
 
2012-10-04 08:40:26 AM
Would you rather people exercise? or would you rather a smaller number of people not risk brain injury?

You can force people to wear a helmet to exercise when you are ready to pay for their diabetes meds.
 
2012-10-04 08:40:35 AM
Basically, the premise here is that helmets make people not want to bike and the city leaders are saying that the whole point of helmets is to prevent head injuries due to high speed collisions, which they state are rare in urban environments. As someone who HAS had a high-speed bicycle accident, I kindly tell those leaders to go pound sand. My helmet was cracked completely through and I didn't even get a concussion. Without it, I probably would at best, have serious brain injuries.
 
2012-10-04 08:41:07 AM
sheep are told to wear a helmet and sheep wear it. i saw a grown up man on roller skates wearing a helmet the other day. Not sure what the danger was.
 
2012-10-04 08:42:08 AM

orclover: Would you rather people exercise? or would you rather a smaller number of people not risk brain injury?

You can force people to wear a helmet to exercise when you are ready to pay for their diabetes meds.


We all belong to the Obamacare Shared Risk Club, now. We are allowed to people how to live their lives.
 
2012-10-04 08:43:21 AM
Good. No helmets, no seat belts, no illusion of safety. Thin out the retards who think they can get away with any of the above and life will be a lot nicer for the rest of us.
 
2012-10-04 08:44:07 AM
Bike sharing program in New York? Yeah, good luck with that.
 
2012-10-04 08:45:34 AM

orclover: Would you rather people exercise? or would you rather a smaller number of people not risk brain injury?


Death to the nanny state. There are too many rules and regulations that make everything unfun. So we'll have a few extra potatoes; someone has to watch daytime TV.
 
2012-10-04 08:45:51 AM
I'm going to hell, but I laughed. Thanks, Subby.
 
2012-10-04 08:46:44 AM
I will not rest until it is legal to drive over a Critical Mass group ride.
 
2012-10-04 08:46:49 AM

Sybarite: Bike sharing program in New York? Yeah, good luck with that.


Not so sure. The one in London seems to work OK.
 
2012-10-04 08:48:40 AM
I've taken some head injuries.
I entertain a lot easier these days.

Those two points may be unrelated.
 
2012-10-04 08:49:50 AM
I don't ride with a helmet, and haven't for well over 30 years, but then again I don't put myself in harms way; if I were one of these morons who ride for speed and who want to be complete cocksuckers on two wheels at @ 30 MPH, then yeah, I'd wear a brain bucket too... hit one tiny rock with those pencil tires and it's pretty much all over.

I would also be amused if someone actually tried to encourage helmetless biking in my city: the current kill numbers for the year so far sits at roughly one a week. Needless to say, I don't ride at night here anymore, because that would basically be a death wish. As if that weren't bad enough, some other cocksuckers keep stealing the ghost bike memorials put up in the honor of the scores that have been killed here.
 
2012-10-04 08:49:57 AM
Well, older Republicans are dying off. They need to replenish the pond, as it were.
 
2012-10-04 08:50:07 AM
I think the article states it perfectly. It's really simple.

I recently bought a biking helmet but have been biking for years. But because I started riding technical mountain bike trails where crashing spectacularly is a real threat, Cruising at 5mph on the shoulder or sidewalks in my suburb on the way to work, not so much.

I have long worn a full face lid on the motorcycle, and I'd rather have one on the trails on the bicycle as well (working on it) because wiring your jaw shut after it lands on a boulder probably isn't fun. Just like shaving my chin down at 50mph on the motorcycle probably isn't either.

I don't wear my bicycle helmet commuting to work. As I gain speed and possibly take to the roads and on a road bike, I might consider it.

They are absolutely right, people will just not ride if you require it. They don't want to mess up their hair.
 
2012-10-04 08:50:18 AM

SniperJoe: Basically, the premise here is that helmets make people not want to bike and the city leaders are saying that the whole point of helmets is to prevent head injuries due to high speed collisions, which they state are rare in urban environments. As someone who HAS had a high-speed bicycle accident, I kindly tell those leaders to go pound sand. My helmet was cracked completely through and I didn't even get a concussion. Without it, I probably would at best, have serious brain injuries.


Emphasis added... I think that there is great thought going into this. Most urban bikers of european cities don't go fast at all, and therefore the risk of being in a high-speed accident are basically nil. In NYC the only people on bikes are crazy mo-fos who are willing to dart through the taxi traffic, etc... so helmets are a damn good idea. It is, as the author suggested, a catch-22. We need to promote bicycle traffic to the point where there is slow but efficient bike traffic, much like the car traffic currently on the roads during rush hour.
 
2012-10-04 08:50:41 AM
So, all of the people who rode bikes when there were no bike helmets are either dead of disabled?
 
2012-10-04 08:51:17 AM

ModernLuddite: I will not rest until it is legal to drive over a Critical Mass group ride.


Ya know.... I ride fairly regularly, to include having done a few century rides...and even I think those people are morons.

There are plenty of roads (including some that could be commuting roads) near me that I won't set (2 wheeled) tire on, because they're narrow, hilly and windy- all of which scream at me "bad idea" for biking.
 
2012-10-04 08:51:28 AM
Cue the anecdotes from the few with bad luck.

If you get hit by a car get a good assault lawyer and take it from there.

Meanwhile it's true that people go decades without an accident. WAY less than cars, where I can see the whole safety puzzle, bike riders, especially on paths, are in pretty good shape.
 
2012-10-04 08:54:30 AM

juvandy: Good. No helmets, no seat belts, no illusion of safety. Thin out the retards who think they can get away with any of the above and life will be a lot nicer for the rest of us.


And it could do wonders for organ donation...
 
2012-10-04 08:54:39 AM

SmellsLikePoo: Emphasis added... I think that there is great thought going into this. Most urban bikers of european cities don't go fast at all, and therefore the risk of being in a high-speed accident are basically nil. In NYC the only people on bikes are crazy mo-fos who are willing to dart through the taxi traffic, etc... so helmets are a damn good idea. It is, as the author suggested, a catch-22. We need to promote bicycle traffic to the point where there is slow but efficient bike traffic, much like the car traffic currently on the roads during rush hour.


The problem is that while bike traffic may not be moving at high-speed, automobile traffic often does. It's simple physics at that point. From a risk point of view, I completely understand what they're trying to do, and as you state, it is a bit of a catch-22. However, the difficulty is that I don't think the risk is quite as small as these managers make it out to be.
 
2012-10-04 08:54:53 AM

SniperJoe: Basically, the premise here is that helmets make people not want to bike and the city leaders are saying that the whole point of helmets is to prevent head injuries due to high speed collisions, which they state are rare in urban environments. As someone who HAS had a high-speed bicycle accident, I kindly tell those leaders to go pound sand. My helmet was cracked completely through and I didn't even get a concussion. Without it, I probably would at best, have serious brain injuries.


A helmet while mountain biking up and down craggy hills, sane. A helmet for a toddler zipping in and out of the street, sane. A helmet for a nice leisurely ride around the park or to the store to get milk, pants on head retarded. Its not an extreme death defying sport every time you get on two wheels. If it is, you need to settle the hell down before you give yourself a heart attack.
 
2012-10-04 08:55:53 AM
I am so mad at the anti-ladder-helmet lobby. They've convinced people you don't need to wear helmets when doing things like using a ladder. I mean, it's as safe as riding a bike, they say.

PEOPLE: WEAR YOUR LADDER HELMETS! YOU COULD FALL!
 
2012-10-04 08:57:56 AM

GORDON: orclover: Would you rather people exercise? or would you rather a smaller number of people not risk brain injury?

You can force people to wear a helmet to exercise when you are ready to pay for their diabetes meds.

We all belong to the Obamacare Shared Risk Club, now. We are allowed to people how to live their lives.


Accidentally?
 
2012-10-04 08:57:58 AM
Well they have a point, helmets only work in certain accidents. It's not going to save you when a car runs you over.
 
2012-10-04 08:58:02 AM
When I ride my bike without a helmet I get weird looks, but the looks were weirder 15 years ago when I would also be smoking.
 
2012-10-04 08:59:54 AM

I have never worn and will never wear a helmet while riding a bicycle. Motorcycle; yeah, but not on a bike.

When I was a kid, wearing a helmet on a bike would have been dangerous because my friends would have whooped my ass for being a wussy.

/We gave Dennis a pass
//He was special
///But he was still our friend.

 
2012-10-04 09:02:00 AM
When I could ride a bike (knees are farking GONE... at 29...):

I bailed going down a trail in the Beartooth mountains. Nailed a log, went flying through the air like Superman and EL KABONGed myself into a pine. Came to about a half-minute later.

Helmet was split the fark in two, bike was good. Dizzy, chomped my tongue so hard, it was sticking out of my mouth and was staggering as I walked.

Had a mild concussion and the helmet saved my ass.

I think it should be your choice, personal safety equipment shouldn't be regulated.

However; you better believe if I could today, I'd still wear a helmet.
 
2012-10-04 09:02:22 AM

acad1228: I have never worn and will never wear a helmet while riding a bicycle. Motorcycle; yeah, but not on a bike.When I was a kid, wearing a helmet on a bike would have been dangerous because my friends would have whooped my ass for being a wussy. /We gave Dennis a pass
//He was special
///But he was still our friend.


On one of my rides a few weeks ago, I hit 38 mph coming down off a hill on my bike. Is falling off a bicycle at nearly 40 mph any less dangerous than crashing a motorcyclye at 40 mph?
 
2012-10-04 09:02:22 AM

bikerbob59: So, all of the people who rode bikes when there were no bike helmets are either dead of disabled?


No; just a higher percentage of them than the ones who wore helmets.

I've had two identical, low speed falls from a bike. No helmet: concision. Helmet: no concision. I'll keep wearing that helmet.
 
2012-10-04 09:02:49 AM
I haven't worn a helmet in 45 years or so. I think I crashed a bike last when I was ten, and tore up my knee. Of course I ride casually and by the rules I was taught as a child. I pull over and let cars by if there's any question of road space. I walk the bike across intersections. I have fat tires that can deal with the occasional patch of sand. When biking with a friend we ride single file. I'm out there for recreation, not to get somewhere by a deadline.

I don't wear bright yellow spandex and demand that distracted drivers of three thousand pound vehicles respect my "rights." Same deal as boating, or even walking across a crosswalk, you may have the right of way, but it won't make you any less dead when the other guy screws up.
 
2012-10-04 09:03:42 AM
salonmonster.com
 
2012-10-04 09:05:07 AM

hiker9999: acad1228: I have never worn and will never wear a helmet while riding a bicycle. Motorcycle; yeah, but not on a bike.When I was a kid, wearing a helmet on a bike would have been dangerous because my friends would have whooped my ass for being a wussy. /We gave Dennis a pass
//He was special
///But he was still our friend.

On one of my rides a few weeks ago, I hit 38 mph coming down off a hill on my bike. Is falling off a bicycle at nearly 40 mph any less dangerous than crashing a motorcyclye at 40 mph?


Good point, but I don't ride for speed. Trudging uphill at 12 mph is a great workout.
 
2012-10-04 09:05:11 AM

Jedekai:

I think it should be your choice, personal safety equipment shouldn't be regulated.



Maybe it's because I grew up in the helmet and seatbelt era, but I actually see the need for 'em, Don't like 'em, but I understand why they're needed.

And I agree completely... they shouldn't be mandatory, and you shouldn't have to pay the government if you don't use them, and in the end, it's on your head if you wind up dead from something that could have been prevented with a helmet or a seatbelt.
 
2012-10-04 09:05:14 AM
Why we shouldn't bike with helmets.

Once upon a time, cars were guests on our streets- and unpleasant ones at that. They moved in, and suddenly the streets became places for cars, as opposed to a public space that cars used- along with many other functions. It's a fascinating inversion- roadways became entirely about cars. Their purpose became a system for moving traffic.

For most of the 20th century, this new philosophy of city planning sucked the vitality and life out of cities. Now the trend is reversing itself, and it's a good trend. Anything that gets more people using the roadways for things other than automobile transportation is good. Bicycles have the added benefit of improving the public health. And the more people we have on bikes, the fewer we have in cars- meaning the risks of collision decrease.

//I wear a helmet, because why not? I like my head. I'm attached to it.
 
2012-10-04 09:06:16 AM

meanmutton: bikerbob59: So, all of the people who rode bikes when there were no bike helmets are either dead of disabled?

No; just a higher percentage of them than the ones who wore helmets.

I've had two identical, low speed falls from a bike. No helmet: concision. Helmet: no concision. I'll keep wearing that helmet.


You sure about that?
 
2012-10-04 09:07:15 AM
And adult riding a bike on a mature and safe bike system cannot be truthfully likened to bike messages in New York. I ride a lot on good, car free urban trails with no helmet (Colorado baby) but I wear one when I am biking or snowboarding in the mountains.
 
2012-10-04 09:07:56 AM

Mercury: Well, older Democrats are dying off. They need to replenish the pond, as it were.


That's sexist or something. Knock it off. ;)
 
2012-10-04 09:08:53 AM

Jedekai: meanmutton: bikerbob59: So, all of the people who rode bikes when there were no bike helmets are either dead of disabled?

No; just a higher percentage of them than the ones who wore helmets.

I've had two identical, low speed falls from a bike. No helmet: concision. Helmet: no concision. I'll keep wearing that helmet.

You sure about that?


It's so bad, he can only count to yam.
 
2012-10-04 09:10:00 AM

Sybarite: Bike sharing program in New York? Yeah, good luck with that.


What a typical knee jerk American response.

Parisian streets and traffic are far worse than NYC, and yet bike share works quite well there (you haven't experienced gridlock during rush hour until you've witnessed some jackass getting stuck in the middle of a 6 way intersection).

There's a really simple reason why urban biking is so much more prevalent in European cities and why the bikes can function tandem with cars: enforcement of traffic laws for both cars and bikers.

A lot of European cities have street lights for bikes (Manhattan has several of these along Broadway). This helps to condition bikers to comply with the law, specifically not running reds. The only bikers who run reds and stop lights in Europe are American tourists. On the car side, in many places they must always yield to bikers, and its enforced.
 
2012-10-04 09:10:33 AM
Wast there a study on Fark saying that helmets can cause more head injuries? Yes, they can save you from nasty injuries, but they can cause some as well. I think it was because a helmet makes your head 25% bigger, thus more prone to hitting things your bare head would have missed.

I think helmets are a problem for a ride-share program because what, do you have one on your belt just in case you decide to go for a ride later? And I'm not wearing som lice-ridden shared helmet. That's like bowling shoes, but worse.
 
2012-10-04 09:12:08 AM

CruJones: Yes, they can save you from nasty injuries, but they can cause some as well.


Well, interestingly, the video I linked describes the testing process for helmets. They put the helmet on a dummy. They stand the dummy up. Then they let the dummy fall forward onto the crown of the helmet.
 
2012-10-04 09:14:52 AM

fireclown: Sybarite: Bike sharing program in New York? Yeah, good luck with that.

Not so sure. The one in London seems to work OK.


Montreal has an extensive system as well. It's just getting started in Toronto.
 
2012-10-04 09:16:17 AM
FTFA: "But many European health experts have taken a very different view: Yes, there are studies that show that if you fall off a bicycle at a certain speed and hit your head, a helmet can reduce your risk of serious head injury. But such falls off bikes are rare - exceedingly so in mature urban cycling systems."

Anecdotal, but a kid in my year in HS died when he got hit by a car and slammed his head into the ground. No helmet on. Died of severe brain trauma.

Falling off a bike on to your head or otherwise getting hit on the head is rare, yes, but then, so are car accidents, at least from person to person. Does that mean we ought to do away with airbags and seatbelts?

People won't ride with a helmet, fine. Let em. But if they get killed by a head injury, don't expect too much sympathy from me.
 
2012-10-04 09:16:41 AM

Rapmaster2000: When I ride my bike without a helmet I get weird looks, but the looks were weirder 15 years ago when I would also be smoking.


Can you blame them? 

imageshack.us
 
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