Comment 41833

By Ryan D (anonymous) | Posted June 10, 2010 at 12:43:28

"Mandating bike helmets (which takes approach #1) actually deters people from cycling because it communicates the idea that cycling is dangerous."

I've never understood this idea that safety precautions = danger, because I've never heard it expressed in a context other than cycling. Seatbelts and airbags don't deter people from driving. Lifejackets don't deter people from boating. Most safety experts recommend keeping a fire extinguisher in the kitchen, but few people consider cooking breakfast to be dangerous. Any time you get on a plane, the flight crew will explain emergency exits, oxygen masks, and flotation devices, but people still fly.

I don't consider cycling to be dangerous, but I always wear my helmet because stupid, unpredictable accidents can happen anyway.

Now, if you don't believe helmets actually provide protection, I can respect that. But I honestly don't understand how taking a reasonable safety precaution makes an activity appear more dangerous.

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