Heads up! Protective helmets required

July 26, 2007 01:03

Beterem says helmets prevented up to 88 percent of all head and brain injuries among cyclists.

Heads up! Protective helmets required

bike helmet 88. (photo credit: )

A private member's bill that will require all bicycle riders - and users of skateboards, skates, ice skates and electric scooters (but not tricycles) - to wear safety helmets was approved by the Knesset on Wednesday night, just before going to recess. The bill, presented by Likud MK Gilad Erdan and backed by Beterem, the National Center for Child Safety and Health, is expected to save many lives. The law takes effect in 60 days. Beterem said that helmets prevented up to 88 percent of all head and brain injuries among cyclists. The helmets must meet standards set by the Transportation Ministry. Parents or guardians may not allow a minor to violate the law. Owners of stores selling bicycles and other such equipment must post readable signs stating that riding or using them requires wearing a helmet. Every year, hundreds of children and adults suffering from head and brain injuries from accidents on wheels are admitted to hospital neurosurgery departments. Such injuries are the most common cause of death or critical injuries among cyclists, and some of them are irreversible. The bill was opposed by some cyclists' organizations that claimed helmets would make them "uncomfortable" and discourage the sport.

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