Bicycle accidents can lead to very serious injuries. In an effort to prevent cyclist injuries, a state senator in California has proposed a bill that would require adult cyclists to wear helmets.
State law currently requires children and teenagers to wear a helmet when riding a bike, but adults are not required to. This could soon change if the bill is passed and signed into law.
Under the bill, bicyclists would be fined $25 if they do not wear a helmet. In addition to the mandatory helmet requirement, cyclists would also be required to wear reflective clothing when riding at night.
A committee is expected to vote on the proposed bill within a few months.
There is support for the bill as well as arguments against the mandatory bike helmet requirement. Even some supporters of the bill feel that it will not reduce collisions between motor vehicles and bicyclists.
To really improve safety for bicyclists, the Los Angeles County Bicycle Association said the state needs to add more bike lanes and increase education for both cyclists and motorists.
The state senator did not cite any studies showing that helmets prevent serious injuries in cyclists, but many cyclists do agree that wearing a helmet can keep them safer. However, many cyclists also stated that they should have the right to choose to wear a helmet instead of being forced to wear one all the time.
Source: ABC 7, “State Senator Proposes Bill That Would Fine Cyclists Not Wearing Helmets,” Melissa MacBride, March 21, 2015