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Choosing a helmet to mitigate collisions

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I have been a daily EUC commutor for the last two years. The only protection I use is wrist guards. I've had two full speed tumbles in this time but fortunately I never ride faster than I can run - top speed is 20kmh - and wrist guards saved me both times from anything more than cuts and scrapes. 

I no longer fear the dreaded faceplant injury at these speeds (although feel free to educate me). However, I do fear getting side swiped by crazy motorcyclists around here. This happened to my friend while on his motorbike and his helmet saved him. 

In short, I think I need a helmet to mitigate motorbike collision injuries. On that basis, what sort of helmets are appropriate? 

Other considerations

- I want full sideways peripheral vision

- would be nice if it can be reused for skiing trips or cycling, if appropriate 

The recent skiing helmet I borrowed seemed to be fairly appropriate. But what about cycling/blading helmets? Full face probably not necessary? 

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If ur mainriding is in traffic then a full face motorcycle helmet would be appropriate.Its not to stop u faceplanting but stop other users damaging u.Smacking into u that are bigger and faster and heavier because of their crap riding /driving is gonna hurt!A downhill mountain-bike helmet may be more suitable with a detachable chin guard for versatility.

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I picked up a Ski helmet, very warm. more protection than a bicycle helmet.

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Odd you should mention side peripheral vision.  In a bike helmet with a detachable chin, the main sensory defect was that I could not peripherally see the ground right in front of me.  I had to get accustomed to "instrument" takeoffs and landings.

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15 hours ago, Biped Phil said:

In a bike helmet with a detachable chin, the main sensory defect was that I could not peripherally see the ground right in front of me.  I had to get accustomed to "instrument" takeoffs and landings.

There are large differences between helmet chin guard lengths. My Cratoni C-Maniac has a shorter chinguard and I don’t think it limits my peripheral vision in any direction. The helmet would of course not protect in the same manner than a sturdy long chin section of a DH rated helmet. But it was perfectly adequate (and perfectly functional) for my gravel crash at 20-25km/h.

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Since all EUC cutouts result in faceplants, you probably need a helmet with a styrofoam chin bar to absorb that impact. That leaves mostly full face motorcycle helmets. All other helmets talk the talk, but can't walk the walk.

However, it seems you're most concerned with collisions with other drivers/motorcyclists. In that case, no helmet at all is your best bet, because wearing a helmet increases your chances of a collision. Drivers and motorcyclists will pass considerably closer to you, although at least with an EUC a lot of unpredictable weaving encourages others to give space in a way the riding a bicycle does not.

Interestingly, the most I've ever seen drivers give a bicyclist space was when a totally drunk girl on a beach cruiser, with her helmet dangling from her handlebar, weaved from my lane onto incoming traffic, so drunk and so high she did this dozens of times each block. You never saw drivers scatter so much like a flock of chickens avoiding her. 

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On ‎1‎/‎30‎/‎2020 at 4:42 AM, LanghamP said:

no helmet at all is your best bet

Nope ,hate to disagree but wearing a helmet doesn't increase ur chance of a collision. Stupidity, not being seen, distraction and being in the wrong place at the wrong time increase ur chance of a collision.Wearing a helmet stops u becoming brain injured or dead when u come off ur Euc. We all come off at some stage and if u want to keep ur brains inside ur head you will grab the best one u can afford!

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15 minutes ago, Daley1 said:

Nope, hate to disagree but wearing a helmet doesn't increase your chances of a collision.

Here's several scientific studies showing a helmet increases collision risks.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/strange-but-true-helmets-attract-cars-to-cyclists/

https://www.bicycling.com/news/a25358099/drivers-give-helmet-cyclists-less-room/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/carltonreid/2018/11/14/motorists-punish-helmet-wearing-cyclists-with-close-passes-confirms-data-recrunch/

https://road.cc/content/news/252652-study-still-indicates-drivers-give-cyclists-wearing-helmets-less-room-when

And finally and excellent summary that we need to build safer roads and streets to collisions between drivers and bicyclists is less injurious.

https://qz.com/1474671/scientists-are-still-debating-whether-bike-helmets-are-actually-safe/

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Looking at these articles/study they are all based on the same data study that shows that people drive closer to people wearing a helmet

I think the flaw with these articles is u cannot dispute the manouvering distance which is hard factual data but the implications he draws that being 3.3 inchs closer to a cyclist in a 1metre to 1.5 metre passing zone is supposition and speculation. 

I think the most relevant part of the first article was this-

 

Coincidentally, around the same time as Walker announced his results, New York City released a report on bicycle deaths and injuries: 225 cyclists died between 1996 and 2005 on New York streets; 97 percent of them were not wearing helmets. Of these deaths, 58 percent are known to involve head injury, but the actual number could be as high as 80 percent. Comparing the helmet to a seat belt in a car, Swart of the BHSI says, "When you do have that crash, you better have it on."

https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2016/sep/22/bicycle-helmets-reduce-risk-of-serious-head-injury-by-nearly-70-study-finds

Thank you for ur effort in researching this and putting in some info .

ps i bet u ride with a helmet:efefa6edcf:!

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If I didn’t wear a helmet last winter, when the wheel slid out underneath me at walking pace and I smacked the back of my head in the ice with enough force to cause a concussion, I would probably not been able to write this, at least not with the same vocabulary I luckily still possess. Helmets aren’t just useful for the big crashes.

To argue that it is better to ride without a helmet because people drive closer to people wearing a helmet, is a bit silly to me. The helmet vs not helmet statistics for deaths or serious injury in bicycle accidents are clear as day in favour of helmets, so even if you increased the amount of accidents for those wearing a helmet by a unrealistic number like 50%, you still wouldn’t be “safer” without a helmet.

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Don't wear a helmet = less likely to be hit by car driver -> but when hit risk of serious injury highly likely + no protection in accidents that don't involve a car.:(

Wear a helmet = slightly more likely to be hit by car driver -> but when hit risk of serious injury greatly reduced + protects in accidents that don't involve a car.:)

Simples ... wear a helmet always!:smartass:

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7 hours ago, Daley1 said:

Coincidentally, around the same time as Walker announced his results, New York City released a report on bicycle deaths and injuries: 225 cyclists died between 1996 and 2005 on New York streets; 97 percent of them were not wearing helmets.

The NYC statistic where 97% of fatalities weren't wearing helmets was pre 2005, when helmet usage was rare. It's somewhat akin to saying 97% of automobile fatalities pre 1955 weren't wearing their safety belts. For 2018, about 40% of the fatal bike crashes were wearing a helmet. Note however, in 2017 only around a dozen bicyclists were killed in NYC, but a lot of pedestrians were mowed down. In my opinion from living in an urban area, having delivery trucks parking in bike lanes and double parking is a good thing because then drivers are extremely slow. Being hit by a driver going 10 mph still hurts, but it's fairly minor.

Interestingly, a bit more than half of killed drivers had head injuries; crashing your automobile is the most likely way to die if you don't smoke. Driver helmets really should be made mandatory, especially if we're going to allows people to move at historically unprecedented speeds.

Australia and the US have the highest rates of helmets usage, with about 100% and 80% respectively. They also have the two highest rates of bicycle deaths per mile travelled and per trip. At the opposite end helmet usage is virtually unknown with the Dutch, but they have the lowest death rate. Helmet usage is strongly correlated with fatality rate, as the environment becomes extremely dangerous.

Helmets don't do a lot when you get rammed by a truck or SUV driver, who punches through your upper torso and head, then runs you over instead of you going over the hood. Most vehicles sold in the US are SUVs and pickup trucks; they are designed to be fatal to pedestrians and bicyclists.

The US has high speed urban highways (called stroads), and that's where drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists go to die. Helmet usage is a wash, wear it or don't, but it's much more important to avoid places where you get hit by car doors (bicycle lanes next to parked vehicles are much more dangerous than being in the car lane), and the most common bicycle death is now being rammed from behind mid block from a driver.

It's highly likely that bike fatalities have increased by just SUV drivers texting. It's a cliche that's true.

 

Edited by LanghamP

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36 minutes ago, LanghamP said:

The NYC statistic where 97% of fatalities weren't wearing helmets was pre 2005, when helmet usage was rare. It's somewhat akin to saying 97% of automobile fatalities pre 1955 weren't wearing their safety belts. For 2018, about 40% of the fatal bike crashes were wearing a helmet. Note however, in 2017 only around a dozen bicyclists were killed in NYC, but a lot of pedestrians were mowed down. In my opinion from living in an urban area, having delivery trucks parking in bike lanes and double parking is a good thing because then drivers are extremely slow. Being hit by a driver going 10 mph still hurts, but it's fairly minor.

Australia and the US have the highest rates of helmets usage, with about 100% and 80% respectively. They also have the two highest rates of bicycle deaths per mile travelled and per trip. At the opposite end helmet usage is virtually unknown with the Dutch, but they have the lowest death rate. Helmet usage is strongly correlated with fatality rate, as the environment becomes extremely dangerous.

Helmets don't do a lot when you get rammed by a truck or SUV driver, who punches through your upper torso and head, then runs you over instead of you going over the hood. Most vehicles sold in the US are SUVs and pickup trucks; they are designed to be fatal to pedestrians and bicyclists.

The US has high speed urban highways (called stroads), and that's where drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists go to die. Helmet usage is a wash, wear it or don't, but it's much more important to avoid places where you get hit by car doors (bicycle lanes next to parked vehicles are much more dangerous than being in the car lane), and the most common bicycle death is now being rammed from behind mid block from a driver.

It's highly likely that bike fatalities have increased by just SUV drivers texting. It's a cliche that's true.

 

If you are hit by a car at relatively slow speed, but you fall to the ground and smack your head in the pavement, a helmet would be useful. If you slow down in a bike lane because of congestion or an obstacle, and a bicyclist hits you from behind so you fall backwards and smack your head in the ground, a helmet would be useful. You can't use general accident statistics like this, you have to look at head trauma accidents, and then the statistic is clear as day, wearing a helmet saves lives.

BTW, the Dutch have excellent bike paths where you rarely are in contact with automotive traffic. They have slow lanes and fast lanes on many of their bike paths. They also have a bicycle culture, with many unwritten laws and regulations for how you should behave as a bicyclist, and since most of the Dutch use bikes, they are more considerate towards cyclists when they drive a car.

Edited by Espen R

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Just as a note, I wear a good skateboarding helmet and I added a little side mirror like @Marty Backe uses. It has taken a bit to get used to and it is a bit fiddleily(sp), but I don't have to turn my head to see what is going on behind me and makes me feel much more comfortable. The first week or so it was actually more dangerous as it is in your vision and you have to figure out how to see in front and behind you at the same time, but now it is good. I would definitely encourage riders to get one. It will NOT make you look cool however, I feel like such a goober wearing it, but I am significantly more situationally aware and safer.

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36 minutes ago, Fuerte said:

Just as a note, I wear a good skateboarding helmet and I added a little side mirror like @Marty Backe uses. It has taken a bit to get used to and it is a bit fiddleily(sp), but I don't have to turn my head to see what is going on behind me and makes me feel much more comfortable. The first week or so it was actually more dangerous as it is in your vision and you have to figure out how to see in front and behind you at the same time, but now it is good. I would definitely encourage riders to get one. It will NOT make you look cool however, I feel like such a goober wearing it, but I am significantly more situationally aware and safer.

:shock2: :blink1: :unsure: :crying:

Edited by Marty Backe

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Just speaking the truth! ;) It does help a BUNCH though and totally worth the added gooberness. Thanks for the video and the link to show me where to get one.

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1 minute ago, Fuerte said:

Just speaking the truth! ;) It does help a BUNCH though and totally worth the added gooberness. Thanks for the video and the link to show me where to get one.

There you go again. You just can't help yourself!

:lol:

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8 minutes ago, Fuerte said:

Just speaking the truth! ;) It does help a BUNCH though and totally worth the added gooberness. Thanks for the video and the link to show me where to get one.

 

FCBEDF18-60AA-40CF-B736-3FEC2F1FD07C.jpeg

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Well played JPD, well played indeed!

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I often have to ride narrow bike lanes to get around, and I've been practicing looking over my shoulder without veering.  The more I ride, the more I find myself cuing in on traffic noise. Is there a car coming up or is it passing? It really helps me make a mental image. Granted I'd never make a move with out visual confirmation, but listening has become very important. Some helmets really block sound and for me it's quite unnerving.  I use a  Bell Servo BMX Helmet, it's on the less expensive end,  good vis and hearing. The style in black is a head cooker in the heat of summer!  Hope this helps.              

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One alternative to the helmet-mounted mirror is a mirror mounted on the back of your wrist-guards. Requires you to lift/position your arm to use (versus being in your periphery all the time), but with how finnicky helmet-mounted mirrors are anyway (requiring positioning your head just right/holding still), I'd wonder if the time delay to use either of them isn't that different.

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11 hours ago, LanghamP said:

 

One thing to note about the helmet studies above is that they are all made on bicyclists. Bicycles are an extremely common, everyday thing for car drivers. An EUC is not. For 99% or drivers an EUC rider is an immeasurably strange thing to see and meet in traffic. My guess is that an EUC rider is given many times more the attention and space that a bicycle rider gets. Helmet or not.

 

3 hours ago, AtlasP said:

 

(Sorry 'bout the empty quotes. Testing an Android, can't remove them!)

Quote

with how finnicky helmet-mounted mirrors are anyway (requiring positioning your head just right/holding still), I'd wonder if the time delay to use either of them isn't that different.

I wonder if you have tried a helmet mirror yourself. At least on my stubby handle bar mirror bolted on to the helmet's visor, I don't get those issues.blockquote widget

Edited by mrelwood

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1 hour ago, mrelwood said:

My guess is that an EUC rider is given many times more the attention and space that a bicycle rider gets. Helmet or not.

Ugh. I find that to be both true and not.

People who disregard the safety of cyclists and pedestrians surely gives no consideration toward EUC riders either.  I've had cars blow past me WAY to close, or drive past to make their right turn in front of me.  And then there's those that seem to panic, not knowing what to do. Pacing me as I ride in the bike lane, afraid to pass? I've had a oncoming car stop at an intersection with no traffic light or stop sign, only me in the left turn lane waiting for a break in traffic.

Most drivers seem pretty sane. Maybe hesitate a little or ogle a bit. A few are idiots though, and present an out-sized distraction and danger.

I've been riding with a bicycle helmet, sport goggles, and neoprene face mask (because it's cold). It was enough to save me big time on my fall. I've been looking to get a full face helmet, mostly to reduce the hassle. I full helmet instead of three separate pieces. Peripheral has been my primary source of reluctance, though.  I haven't tried a helmet mounted mirror, but I've been riding with a small mirror on my arm. Leaves a lot to be desired.

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