Monthly Archives: August 2012

Why Bradley Wiggins is so wrong: Part Three: Should cyclists be allowed to wear helmets?

Let’s get to the core of Bradley Wiggins’ (since partly retracted) comments which have caused such frenzied debate. We are actually going to have a brief look at the accumulated evidence on the
effects of cycle helmet wear – something which is rarely done. What this indicates is a remarkable lack of evidence of benefits. (This is apart from the diversionary – “red herring” – and the “dangerising “effects of helmet advocacy which are themselves worryingly negative.)
Although my view is that cyclists should indeed be allowed to wear helmets, this is on the basis of allowing all kinds of behaviours which have minimal, zero, or indeed negative benefits for the
user. It would be quite possible for “road safety” professionals with a commitment to prohibiting certain behaviours to do so. The point is to show the absence of positive evidence and to open the Pandora’s Box of road user response to danger, as we do below… Continue reading

Why Bradley Wiggins is so wrong: Part Two: “Road safety” ideology and the culture of cyclist subservience

Bradley Wiggins has (partly) backtracked on his comments made on August 1st. However, there is no fundamental change in the key ideological elements which were present in his original statement. They tell us a lot about the cultural barriers to achieving safety for cyclists and other road users. Continue reading