Wearing Helmets To Become Obligatory for All Ages in Sweden
STOCKHOLM, Sweden – “The number of Swedish children injured after bicycle accidents have fallen sharply since 2005 where it became compulsory for children under 15 years to wear a helmet in Sweden,” reported the newspaper ‘Dagens Nyheter’ recently.
According to statistics of the Social Agency in Sweden, “501 children under 15 years old were taken to a hospital with head injuries after bike accidents in 2005. Ten years later this number had dropped to 288, a decline of 43%.”
Awareness among adults
The helmet regulation implemented in 2005 not only affected the number of head injuries among children but also made more adults aware of the risks of cycling and make them decide to wear a helmet as well. Compared with 2005, the number of adults which were taken to a hospital with head injuries decreased by 32%.
Giving an example
According to Maria Melkersson of Sweden’s Social Agency’s Traffic Analysis Office, “the explanation for this decline is that parents now want to give a good example to their children by wearing helmet themselves.”
Several studies show that three out of ten Swedish adult cyclists wear a helmet when riding. This made the Swedish brain foundation Hjärnfonden and the road safety organization NTF decide to propose legislation requiring the use of helmets for all ages.