Sunday, June 22, 2008

A rant of sorts

So, as I was riding along the Little Miami Trail this morning, I got a little more irritated than usual about one of cycling pet peeves. It was probably exacerbated by the my friend who often works in the trauma unit at a major hospital in Tennessee saying, "You know how many severe head trauma cases I've seen from simple accidents gone wrong. You know, I'd just rather god take me."

I'm sure you can tell where this is going. It drives me crazy when people don't wear helmets when they ride -- whether it's a bike on the sidewalk or a motorcycle on the interstate. Now, sometimes I understand the mentality a bit, especially on a bike, where you grew up cruising around, 8-years-old, without a care in the world and certainly without wearing a helmet. You'd fly off the handlebars once or twice during your childhood, but you'd always pick yourself up, run to mom for Neosporin and a Band-aid, and head back out knowing that you can't really jump those pesky stumps.

Well folks, along the way someone figured out that a lot of kids AND adults never picked themselves up, got their band-aid, and went on their joyful way. A bicycle helmet costs $10-$20 at Target and Wal-mart, and if you stick them on your kids, it's not okay to give them the idea that once you grow up, you don't need them any more. There are a lot of people being bad examples to kids on the trail. 67,000 Adults go to the hospital for head injuries sustained on a bicycle each year. Estimates show that as many as 88 percent of those injuries could be prevented with a helmet.

Wearing a bicycle helmet should be like wearing sunscreen or a seat belt. You just do it because over the long term, the odds that something bad will happen for not doing it, is too large.


amanda said...

Yes! Thanks for sharing that. It drives me insane when people don't wear helmets. And you're right about the price, I bought a spare one at Target this weekend for $14.97.

Loree said...

I don't have much to say here except for:

A) If I cycled, I'm sure I'd have a helmet and it would drive me nuts if my fellow cyclists didn't wear helmets.



That helmet illustration is spectacular.

Melissa said...

Thanks for posting this, Laura. I have a family member with a brain injury (sustained in a different way). At his brain injury support group meetings, over 80% of the people there had been injured riding a bike. These injuries change your life in every imaginable way, so please, please, please wear your helmets!!

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