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Reinventing the Wheel: How to become a cycling city

On Monday 13th October, as part of the Sydney Rides Festival (sydneyridesfestival.net), ‘Reinventing the Wheel: How to become a Cycling City’ was held at Customs House, Sydney.

The guest speaker, Aletta Koster, director of the Dutch Cycling Embassy, had recently hosted a tour of The Netherlands (in collaboration with the Consulate-General of the Netherlands in Sydney) for an Australian delegation some of whom you might not expect: delegates from the NRMA and the RACQ [Royal Automobile Club of Queensland] accompanied the usual suspects (Cycling Promotion Fund, Australian Bicycle Council, Bicycle NSW, City of Sydney, City of Parramatta, City of Port Phillip, City of Melbourne)).

Whilst in The Netherlands the delegates attended various workshops and were introduced to ‘Dutch cycling’ and the practical application of this for Australia.

Three delegates presented their findings.

It’s this sort of collaboration that is the best way for change to occur. It’s not only automobile club representatives who are amenable to change but cyclists, too!

Here are some highlights from the presentations.

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Attendees at the Reinventing the Wheel talk, Customs House

Willem Cosijn, Consul-General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands opened the session.

The Netherlands has more bikes than people (90M+ v 80M) . Willem gave nod, in a diplomatic, amusing and C-G kinda way to the room for improvement that Sydney could undertake (e.g. easing traffic on Bondi Road, Military Road).

If the King and Queen of the Netherlands cycle daily, coming from the “top down’ is surely the way to go!

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Willem Cosijn shows a picture of Queen Maxima and King Willem-Alexander on their bikes, part of their habitual mode of transport.

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Willem Cosijn: bicycling is “healthy, cheap, fun and romantic.”

Stephen Hodge (Cycling Promotion Fund) had gone on the Dutch tour.

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The Netherlands is the #1 country in the world to use the bicycle: there’s less noise, less stress and less traffic.

 

 

Peter Bourke (Director General Cycling Promotion Fund)

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Bike lanes are comfortable. Even bicycle tunnels are appealing / light. There is a coherent system to follow; the bike lanes are direct (it’s quicker by bike than car for local trips) and it’s safe. The car is a guest.

 

Michael Roth, RACQ (Royal Automobile Club Queensland)

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We need a better transport system. The roads are there for buses and cyclists. We should work together and demand better bike lanes.

Myfanwy Lawrence, Australian Bicycle Council and City of Parramatta.

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(Peter Bourke) 49% of Dutch kids cycle to school (This author: 2.7% Australian kids cycle to school*)

Atella Koster, director Dutch Cycling Embassy.

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Atella thought the Dutch cycling revolution in the 1970s wouldn’t happen today- it happened at a time when there was much stronger civic direct action. She suggested it might be advisable to focus on the economic, social and environmental benefits of cycling. Tourism would be another key focus point to use. Don’t use emotion use economics!

 

 

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Why do the Dutch cycle? They share a culture of equality. They don’t despise cars either, having one of the highest car ownership percentages  in Europe. However, they understand fitness for purpose and prefer bikes in urban areas.

 

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Question time! From helmets, to the Australian Cyclists Party. From insurance to liability.

 

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It would be good when there’s a time that the helmet issue isn’t even raised. At the moment helmets are the 5th most important reason given for not cycling.

To sum up? Well, the Netherlands is egalitarian so there isn’t the ‘us’ vs ‘them’ culture. There’s no stigma about riding a bicycle, on the contrary it’s normalised and kids ride up front on their parents’ handlebars when young, they ride their bikes to primary school. Cycling is normalised. In Australia we address cycling by regulating and restricting it when we should focus on enabling cycling which is coordinated at a national level in the Netherlands.

 

Victorian State Election

State Election Update

Three members of Freestyle Cyclists are helping the Australian Cyclists Party by standing as candidates in the Victorian Election.

Kathy Francis, our Secretary, is standing in Western Victoria. Her daughter Arwen Birch is standing in Northern Victoria. Nik Dow, our Treasurer is standing for the Party in Northern Metro. The Australian Cyclists Party is standing in all upper house regions, so you can vote for the Party wherever you live.

Voting in the upper house is easy – you can put a 1 above the line, or you can number from 1 to 5 (or more) boxes below the line if you want to control your own preferences. You only have to number 5 or more boxes below the line to cast a valid vote. If you vote this way, leave all the boxes above the line blank.

Letter to Candidates

see the answers

I am writing to you in the lead up to the November State election to request your party’s policy position with regard to current regulations requiring all cyclists to wear an approved helmet, and to seek clarification as to any future policy, being mindful of the broader aim of encouraging cycling and active transport in general.

As you may know, Mandatory Helmet Laws for cyclists (MHLs) were first introduced by Victoria in 1990, the first state in the world to do so. Shortly after, similar regulations were introduced throughout Australia, where they remain today, with the exception of the Northern territory. Following a public petition in 1994, the NT now allows adults the choice in this matter when riding on footpaths and separated cycle paths.

Since then, only New Zealand and the United Arab Emirates have followed, with nationally enforced all ages MHLs. A small number of countries and provinces require children to wear helmets, but allow adults the choice.

This situation would be remarkable if MHLs had indeed achieved their stated aim of significantly reducing the incidence and severity of head injuries to cyclists. What the rest of the world has seen however is that the principal effect of MHLs in Australia was to sharply reduce participation in cycling, while delivering no significant safety benefits when measured against participation rates. [1]

After twenty four years, it is time to admit Victoria (and Australia) got this one wrong. Cycling participation rates are now lower than they were in 1986, and even over the first biennial period of monitoring the National Cycling Strategy (2011-2013) they have declined. [2],[3]

Queensland has already gone some way to putting this matter to rights. Their joint Parliamentary Enquiry into Cycling Issues made two significant recommendations in their final report issued in November last year. These were, to trial an exemption for adults on separated bike paths and low speed roads, and to exempt adult users of public bike share schemes. The committee recognised that requiring adults to wear helmets contributes to negative perceptions of cyclists as “other”, and impacts both on the treatment of cyclists by other road users, and on participation in cycling.[4]

We have no issue with adults wearing bicycle helmets by choice. We do take issue with the continued ban on bicycle riding as practiced in the rest of the world. At a time when traffic congestion is worsening, and community activity levels are generally in decline, it makes no sense at all to put up barriers to using a bicycle, and deny the benefits of this healthy and sustainable form of transport to adults who may not wish to wear a helmet. The continued punishment of “offenders” is simply wrong.

In conclusion, we are asking for a simple yes/no answer to the question “Would your party support reform of Victoria’s bicycle helmet regulations to allow adult cyclists the choice of whether or not to wear a helmet?” Your response will be posted on our website, and circulated to our members and supporters.

I have attached a copy of the Freestyle Cyclists’ Vision Statement for your interest, and I look forward to your response to our question.

Regards

Alan Todd

President
Freestyle Cyclists Inc.

References

  • [1] D. L. Robinson “Head Injuries and Bicycle Helmet Laws” Accident Analysis and Prevention Vol.28, No4 1996.
  • [2] Gillham and Rissel, Australian cycling participation in 1985/86 and 2011. World Transport Policy and Practice Vol 18.3 May 2012.
  • [3] Results of the 2013 National Cycling Participation Survey. Austroads Publication No. AP-C91-13 October 2013
  • [4] A new direction for cycling in Queensland. Report No.39-Inquiry into Cycling Issues. Transport, Housing and Local Government Committee November 2013

Answers

Australian Cyclists Party: “yes” in favour of adult choice.

Sex Party: although we haven’t received a direct answer to our question, the Sex Party’s position on helmet law is clear:
https://www.sexparty.org.au/policies/victorian-policy/36-asp/policies/1764-environmental-policy.html

Liberal Democratic Party also hasn’t answered our letter but has a clear position on helmet law reform:
http://www.ldp.org.au/index.php/news/press-releases/1260-repeal-bicycle-helmet-laws

Australian Labor Party: “no”

Liberal Party: The Victorian Government has no plans to remove mandatory helmet legislation.

Greens: we see no evidence that would support a change to the current law.

Australian Christians: “no”

 

Queensland Considers Reform

Last year a committee of the Queensland Parliament produced a report on laws related to cycling.

Two of the recommendations concerned helmet laws:

Recommendation 15

“The Committee recommends that the Minister for Transport and Main Roads:

  •  introduce a 24 month trial which exempts cyclists aged 16 years and over from the mandatory helmet road rule when riding in parks, on footpaths and shared/cycle paths and on roads with a speed limit of 60 km/hr or less and 
  • develop an evaluation strategy for the trial which includes baseline measurements and data collection (for example through the CityCycle Scheme) so that an assessment can be made which measures the effect and proves any benefits.”

Recommendation 16

“The Committee recommends that the Minister for Transport and Main Roads introduce an
exemption from Queensland road rule 256 for all cyclists age 16 years and over using a bicycle from a
public or commercial bicycle hire scheme.”

The Minister announced immediately that he would not support reform of helmet law, and stuck to this despite the evidence gathered by the Steering Committee.

Any time you would like to remind the minister that he got it wrong,

Email the minister

TransportandMainRoads@ministerial.qld.gov.au

Write to the minister

Hon Scott Emerson MP
Minister for Transport and Main Roads
GPO Box 2644, Brisbane QLD 4001

Phone the minister’s office

(07) 371 97300

Send a fax

(07) 322 42493

Read more on our website.

You can download the report here.

Write to the Queensland Minister

The Queensland Government is considering reforming helmet laws to allow share bikes to be exempt, and also to allow choice for all people riding on off-road, shared paths and roads with speed limits up to 60km/h. The decision is being made in the Minister’s office right now, so send a message:

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A New Direction?

Cycling in Brisbane, Australia (image courtesy of BicycleDutch)

Last week the Queensland Inquiry into Cycling Issues finalised its report entitled “A New Direction for Cycling in Queensland” and tabled it in parliament.  The report was commissioned following the high profile death of a talented musician, Richard Pollett, two years ago in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

Richard was hit & killed on a multi-lane road by the driver of a cement truck who ‘believed’ he had plenty of room to pass safely within the same marked lane. Clearly he didn’t have enough room but a jury found the driver not guilty of dangerous driving.

The foci of the Committee included the notion of implementing ‘Bicycle Registration’ and a ‘Safe Passing Distance Law’ as well as other existing and alternative road rules. To its credit the Committee looked at the issue of cycling more broadly. It’s a sensible approach because making the world a better place for cycling requires making it a better place for people and for that you have to look at the broader issues.

Of the 68 recommendations in the report, the Committee made two recommendations relating  to bicycle helmets: that people over 16 years old can choose whether or not to wear a helmet if they are riding on footpaths, bike paths or roads speed limited to 60 km/h or below; or if they are hiring a bike like Brisbane’s public bicycle hire scheme, CityCycle.

We here at Helmet Freedom have often been accused of being a single focus group, ignoring other ‘more important’ issues that improve cyclist safety and that discussing bicycle helmet laws is a distraction. Superficially this appears to be the case and in some respects it is true: there ARE more important things for cyclist safety than bicycle helmets… which is precisely why we are fighting to not make it a legal requirement for all cyclists to wear them, at all times. It’s safety theatre which has a number of negative consequences: in particular it reduces cyclist numbers and it sends the message that cycling is so especially dangerous you need safety equipment.

We are actually all very active in the broader bicycle advocacy world. Our core membership includes a range of different ‘types’ of cyclist, including many athletes, but we all have one thing in common: we are strong advocates for transport/utility cycling. This is the very type of cycling which has been neglected in this country over the past 20 years & which was most negatively impacted by bicycle helmet laws. While we all oppose mandatory bicycle helmet laws we also have strong views on other cycling advocacy issues and, as individuals, have made submissions to the Inquiry covering many topics including infrastructure, sustainable safety, speed limits and the safe passing distance laws*.

It is no surprise that most current ‘avid cyclists’ in this country care little about the helmet law when it doesn’t influence the sort of cycling they do – they simply don’t cycle to get from A to B, they drive. We cycle for almost all of our transport trips. These days, almost all cyclists in Australia cycle for sport or recreation, with a small percentage cycling to work. This includes the large state advocacy organisations and some national ones, who almost exclusively represent sport & recreational cycling, despite pretending to be more inclusive.

Some of these large advocacy organisations do not even support the safe passing distance law as there is ‘no evidence’ that it will improve safety – the big offenders here are Bicycle Network (Victoria) and Bicycle Queensland. This is an astounding statement to make because they’re strongly in support of mandatory helmet laws for cyclists despite there being no evidence to support them and considerable evidence which shows that they’re bad for cycling.

The one large national organisation which does support the safe passing distance law, The Amy Gillett Foundation, also has come out in support of helmet laws for cyclists. The organisation gets its name from Amy Gillett, a talented track cyclist who was hit & killed while training in Germany by a young driver. Amy was wearing a helmet.

Despite arguing between themselves about the safe passing distance recommendations, both Bicycle Network (BNV) and the Amy Gillett Foundation (AGF) recognise that the best way to achieve greater safety for people on bikes is to have many more people on bikes. While Garry Brennan [BNV] and Marilyn Johnson [AGF] disagree on much of the strategy behind and the execution of A Metre Matters, they do agree on the cycling community’s biggest weapon when it comes to increasing safety on the roads: getting more cyclists on the road. Here’s Garry’s take:

“There’s plenty of evidence to show that where we get the numbers of bikes up so that drivers are regularly encountering bikes on the road, they expect therefore to see bikes on the road and then they do see bikes on the road. That is the simple most powerful factor we have at the moment, working in our favour.” – Source

Interestingly, the reflexive helmet law support is being driven by the likes of the AGF with MUARC (Monash University Accident Research Centre) and their associated academics Marilyn Johnson, Paul Biegler, and Jan Garrard of Deakin. Melbourne Bike Share is running at about 0.8 trips per bike per day this year and they are looking at expanding. But Brisbane’s is still struggling with about 0.35 trips per bike per day.

 

 

The AGF appears to also oppose recommendation 16 [an exemption for bike share] so it appears we have Melbourne academics making decisions about the viability of Brisbane’s CityCycle scheme. Far easier for them to do this when theirs is getting twice the usage of the Brisbane scheme, despite being paltry by world standards. Will the AGF come up with the false line that “there are factors other than helmet laws which lead to the low usage” for our bike share schemes? If so, this has no basis in fact. It’s obvious to international experts like Oliver O’Brien what the reasons for the low Australian usage are.

 

Depressingly, since the beginning of the Queensland Inquiry there have been a number of high profile deaths of cyclists. In every single case they were wearing helmets, as they are told to do by law. In every single case this supposed ‘important safety measure’ failed them. The was one significant common element in almost all of these deaths: trucks.

Wouldn’t it be better to focus on the cause of the danger?

Why are we so focussed on making crashing ‘safer’ instead of making crashes less likely to occur in the first place?

Why are we not looking at world’s best practice to build a safe environment for cycling & walking, using Sustainable Safety Principles? When it comes to collisions that cause the most danger, why are we not listening to the experts and removing/reducing the danger instead of blaming the victim (with calls for hi-viz, more helmet promotion and ‘cyclist education’)?

The Queensland Inquiry addresses some of these issues, particularly recommendations to help protect vulnerable road users and they’ve also overwhelmingly rejected bicycle registration – will that genie ever stay in its bottle? There are certainly some questionable recommendations such as ‘equalising of fines with motorists’ and ‘mandatory lights on bicycles 24/7’ but on the whole, it is positive for cycling in Queensland and in Australia.

What can you do?

Read the report here (the 68 recommendations are summarised from page ‘xv’)

Show your support for the recommendations of the committee by writing to the Queensland Transport Minister, Scott Emerson. Even if you’re not residing in Queensland, even if you’re from overseas, consider showing your support. Don’t simply support the helmet law changes, support those measure which you personally agree with. There is much to be done, but this is the closest  we have ever come in getting real change happening for every day cycling in Australia, and it may be the only opportunity we have to let the politicians know how important these changes are. 

 

EDIT
* While not our focus, the safe passing distance law is important. We believe that it will only be used in cases where there is a clear breach (dangerously close passes or where a cyclist is hit – see Craig Cowled’s case). It’s designed to give some teeth to authorities in cases like the Pollett case, such that a driver can no longer get away with saying they ‘thought they had enough room’. That’s the significance of it.

Voztec helmets

Here is some correspondence to amuse you:

From: Mark Bryant
<markbryant@voztec.com>
Address: 34…

Are u kidding? to ride anything without a helmet is totally stupid. I am an inventor and own an Australian company called Voztec Helmets, most head trauma can occur with as little as a 10k per hour impact.
[Editor’s comment: here we see fear mongering motivated by commercial interests]

If u want people to die or end up vegetables then ban helmets. Cannot believe i am hearing this.
[Editor’s comment: did we say we wanted to ban helmets?]

On 7 May 2014, at 11:48 am, Nicholas Dow <nik@c…> wrote:

Do you wear a helmet when in a car?

Don’t tell me that seat belts etc prevent head injuries. Far more people are admitted to hospital with head injuries from inside cars than from riding bikes.

From: Mark Bryant <markbryant@v…>
To: Nicholas Dow <nik@c…>

Thats why they have air bags and racing car drivers wear them u kidding.
[Editor’s comment: He did tell me after all. Noted that racing car drivers wear helmets, but not everyday drivers. Point made.]

Don’t know who u are however u are poorly informed buddy…

On 7 May 2014, at 12:38 pm, Nicholas Dow nik@c…> wrote:
So why are there more head injuries admitted to hospital from car occupants than from cyclists?  Vastly more actually – look up the numbers.

So you don’t wear a helmet in a car?  Then stop telling other people to wear helmets, otherwise you could be considered hypocritical.

BTW, there must be a lot of “totally stupid” people in the world, because most ppl in the world ride bikes without helmets.

From: Mark Bryant <markbryant@v…>
To: Nicholas Dow <nik@c…

U are a goose

Mark Bryant Voztec Pty Ltd
Managing Director
Talk: +61 420 763 223 Sydney NSW 2000 Australia
Skype: mark.voztec

Freestyle Cyclists Launch 6 October 2012

Freestyle Cyclists are launching their campaign for reform of Australia and New Zealand’s bicycle helmet legislation next month with a keynote address from Chris Rissel, Professor of Public Health, University of Sydney.

Other speakers include lawyer and cycling activist Sue Abbott, independent Queensland filmmaker Geoff McLeod, and City of Yarra Councillor Jackie Fristacky.

The event will be held on Saturday 6th of October at 1pm at CERES Community Environment Park, Cnr Roberts & Stewarts Streets, East Brunswick (Melbourne).

Following presentations, there will be a demonstration of civil disobedience involving cycling along the nearby Merri Creek bike track while not wearing helmets.

So why not join them at the launch or sign their online petition for helmet law reform?

About Freedom Cyclists:

Freestyle Cyclists seeks the reform of bike helmet law in Australia and New Zealand to get more people riding bikes.

Repealing helmet laws will give people a choice, and remove the barrier for those occasions when a person decides to ride without a helmet.

Discouraging cycling is bad for public health because the health benefits of cycling outweigh the risks by a large factor – including when not wearing a helmet.

In 1990, Victoria became the first place in the world to require people to wear a helmet when riding a bike. The rest of Australia (with the exception of the Northern Territory, which allows choice on footpaths and bike tracks) followed soon after. Regrettably, the other states did not wait for an evaluation of the effects of the legislation in Victoria before passing their own laws.

World wide, only New Zealand has followed suit with a nationally enforced all ages ban on cycling without a helmet. A handful of Canadian provinces and some local US jurisdictions have legislation enforced to varying degrees, while a handful of countries require children to wear helmets. All in all,after over twenty years the idea hasn’t spread.

The idea hasn’t spread, because mandatory bike helmet laws simply do not work. The hoped for reduction in head injuries did not happen. The risk of head injury per km cycled showed no measurable change, while the risk of other injuries actually went up. The numbers of Australians cycling dropped dramatically, particularly amongst women and teenagers. Even today, despite years of “cycling promotion” by governments and public health agencies, participation in cycling of all kinds is less per head of population than it was in 1986. One in five Australians report that they are put off riding a bike by the helmet requirement.

Cycling has become almost exclusively a sporting activity in Australia. Visitors from Europe remark on how fast and recklessly Australians ride. The normal use of a bicycle to get to work, visit friends or do the shopping has all but disappeared. Even the small growth in inner city cycling in Melbourne and Sydney in recent years looks trivial when compared to the successful cycling cities of Europe and Asia. Policing of cycle safety is almost exclusively restricted to dishing out fines for helmet non-compliance. Cities as diverse as London, Paris, Dublin and Barcelona have achieved impressive results with their new public bike sharing. Australia has the dishonourable distinction of playing host to the world’s least successful schemes in Melbourne and Brisbane.

Australia is the helmet experiment that failed. The rest of the world has learned from our mistake and powers ahead with the integration of the bicycle into their urban transport systems. We have stubbornly refused to learn. There is something wrong with a country that can win the Tour de France and gold medals in Olympic cycling, but bans it citizens from going about their daily business by bicycle unless they wear an ineffective polystyrene hat.

Its high time to ditch this petty, irksome and pointless barrier to the use of bicycles by ordinary Australians.

Australia’s Helmet Law Disaster

Read the full article at The Institute of Public Affairs

MHLs are not only unnecessary and unjust, they are inconsistent. Pedestrians and car occupants are each responsible for more hospital patient days for head injuries than cyclists. Despite this, few argue that compulsory walking and driving helmets are essential for safety.

After 20 years, the results are clear: the compulsory bike helmet experiment has failed. We need to amend the law to allow adults the freedom to choose if a helmet is necessary when they cycle.

Some will still choose to wear helmets at all times, and this is a totally reasonable decision. However in many situations it is perfectly safe to go without and Australia should join the rest of the world in allowing this simple freedom.

Helmet Freedom on TV

Our new television advertisements will begin airing in Brisbane, Australia, over the next few weeks, starting on Channel Go this evening from 19:30.

The purpose of the ads is to highlight just how isolated Australia and New Zealand are with respect to their all-age mandatory bicycle helmet laws – being the only two countries in the world to have such laws and enforce them.

Many good ideas have spread rapidly from Australia (for example seatbelts, black box flight recorders and so on), yet the countries with the highest cycling rates in the world know that forcing all cyclists to wear a bicycle helmets at all times while riding *any* bicycle is counterproductive. It is about the cheapest and laziest thing that a Government could do in the name of ‘cycling safety’, particularly considering it hasn’t improved cyclist safety at all!

The Northern Territory realised that this law was flawed and, soon after their introduction, added exemptions for adults on footpath & cyclepaths. They enjoy a higher rate of cycling – particularly for transport, not sport – and yet have a safety record which is no different to the rest of the country. There are more exemptions in the law for seatbelt use (or non-use) than for bicycle helmets (paying pedicab passengers being the only common exemption across states). We don’t even have an exemption for our crippled public bike hire schemes in Melbourne & Brisbane, despite calls from a prominent cycling journalist for a rethink. Suggestions to the previous Queensland Government of even a trial exemption for bike share were ignored.

It’s time for change.

Do As I Say, Not As I Do

This week an article was published in the Health Promotion Journal of Australia entitled “The possible effect on frequency of cycling if mandatory bicycle helmet legislation was repealed in Sydney, Australia: a cross sectional survey”.

The results are interesting.

  • 1 in 5  said they would ride more if helmets were not compulsory. (Similar to the figure from the Cycling Promotion Fund Survey)
  • The desire for helmet choice was higher in the younger age group and among regular cyclists
  • Support for helmet laws increased as cycling use decreased, with support for the law being highest among those that have never ridden a bicycle!

The last point is interesting but it appears to be a common theme in the world of mandatory bicycle helmet legislation. Here it is in graphical form for the visual among us.

There is nothing quite like imposing laws that don’t affect you.

Many of the strongest supporters of such legislation ride infrequently, if at all. How is it that they’re able to impose their belief (that bicycle helmet laws can only be a good thing) when they not only do not have a grasp of the broader issues (cycling rates, health benefits of any cycling) but that they don’t even ride a bicycle? The answer is that in countries where all-aged enforced helmet laws have been introduced (Australia, New Zealand & UAE), people who ride bicycles are a minority. In countries where everyone cycles (for transport particularly), such laws would never get off the drawing board.

There are more examples of this phenomenon. Ken Livingstone, the former Mayor of London, had been planning on introducing mandatory helmet laws for cyclists prior to the operation of the now famous ‘Boris Bikes’ (Barclay’s Bike Hire) who were named in honour of the fellow who unseated him before he could implement this, Boris Johnson. The Independent reports:

“Boris Johnson has unveiled his green transport policy – free cycling lessons. Not for all Londoners, but for Ken Livingstone, the man he is trying to oust as Mayor of London, who admits he can’t ride a bike.
Another interesting character is one Angela Lee of the Bicycle Helmet Initiative Trust (or BHIT – a somewhat disturbing abbreviation…) who does not ride a bike (see picture below) yet ‘believes’ that cyclists should be forced to wear helmets…

Another non-cyclist that believes she knows what’s good for cyclists.

There is an awful lot of belief when it comes to mandatory helmets laws. It is a word we here at Helmet Freedom don’t like using very much. We like facts.
So, what can you do about it? a number of things:
  • Write to your state member and ask that the law be reviewed and amended to give at least adults the choice
  • Go to the GetUp! Suggestion Forum and Vote Up the suggestion.
  • Go to the Queensland Agenda page on the OurSay.org site and Vote for the suggestion (you can assign 7 votes per person to it). The top three will be put to the Queensland Premier.
  • Go to our Webshop and buy some stickers (or make your own) and spread the word.

Change will only come from public support as most politicians don’t ride bicycles and therefore fit into the column on the right of the graph…


Take action today and start enjoying the ride! Read more