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Hard-headed attitude to helmets sets bad example

LTSA online
It seems older people don’t value their heads as much as younger people.
The Land Transport Safety Authority’s latest survey of cycle helmet wearing rates shows that the younger you are the more likely you are to wear your helmet.

The survey found that 97 percent of primary and intermediate school age children wore helmets while cycling compared with 93 percent of secondary school students and 92 percent of adult cyclists.

The Director of Land Transport Safety, David Wright, said it was disappointing that some adult commuters who should be setting a good example were instead opting to ride without the protection of a helmet. “Unlike heads, it seems that bad habits are hard to break,” said Mr Wright.

The national cycle wearing rate in all age groups was 94 percent, compared with 93 percent last year and 95 percent in similar surveys in 1998 and 1999.

Cantabrians, Southlanders and cyclists from the Nelson-Marlborough region had the highest cycle helmet wearing rates (97 percent). The lowest wearing rates were found in Northland (85 percent), the Auckland region (86 percent), Auckland City (86 percent) and the West Coast (90 percent).

The survey of more than 7,400 cyclists of all ages was carried out during commuter hours at 58 sites around the country in March and April this year.

“The results show there is still some work to do to remind hard-headed cyclists of the requirement to wear a properly fitted helmet when cycling.

“The rules are there for a reason and the message is simple: if you’re on your bike, put your lid on. Not doing so could cost you a $55 fine or worse still, your life,’’ Mr Wright said.

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