Alex Dowsett sparks helmet debate after crash

Former British time trial champion Alex Dowsett sparked another helmet debate yesterday after voicing his opinions following a crash.

According to Cycling Weekly, the rider posted the image showing damage to his helmet, sustained when he was involved in a crash in the final metres of Saturday’s stage of the Tour of Guangxi.

He said: “My helmet, it’s cracked, it saved my head, thank you @oakleybike!

“Now let’s chat about helmets. This is a topic that always causes some divided opinions but I’m certainly of the opinion that they should be compulsory for all cyclists, everywhere, all of the time.

“People like Chris Boardman have said like in places such as Holland where no one wears lids it’s not about wearing a helmet for safety but about infrastructure of the roads, which is a very valid point.

“… I along with a few people in Holland I’m sure have crashed by my own errors without the help of any others road users, human error isn’t it!

“Rather than wearing a helmet in a car I actually think it’s more akin to wearing a seatbelt.”

The post, which has since been deleted, sparked a debate on Twitter with many people supporting his comments and others arguing against it. 

Chris Boardman responded with two tweets: “Tell me where in the world mandatory helmet use reduces head injury? (Hint: nowhere)

“Tell me what happened in countries where made helmets mandatory? (Hint, it fell dramatically)

“51 per cent of kids ride to school in the Netherlands. Tell me what their head injury rate is? (Hint, it’s the lowest in the world)

“Mandating will kill more people by other means than it saves. I researched it for 20 years and use evidence not opinions to understand.”

Dowsett later tweeted: “Helmet post was every bit the can of worms I expected! I read and respected all the replies, positive and negative.

“I do fully understand there’s a lot more to it, infrastructure, uptake etc, I’m simply pro helmet and this is based off countless stories of them doing their job.”

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