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Make helmets compulsory, says Tour de France winner

Posted on in Cycles News

Tour de France champion Geraint Thomas has said he would make helmets compulsory for cyclists.

Speaking about cycling culture in the UK in an interview with the Sunday Times magazine Thomas said "Things have improved a lot since 2008 and 2012, after the Olympics, when cycling really caught on,"

cycling in the city"When I was a kid I was always being beeped and told to get off the effin' road. The problem is that cyclists and drivers see each other as enemies. A cyclist can get cut up by a car and the driver has been an idiot, but 10 minutes later that cyclist is jumping a red light. You've got to share the road."

Going on to speak about the need for helmets, especially in London Thomas says "I've never ridden a bike in London, apart from in a race. I've watched from a taxi and it does seem a bit crazy. I would certainly make helmets compulsory. I always wear a helmet, I've put on a helmet more times than I've buckled a seatbelt. Helmets have come on a lot - well ventilated, not too hot, you don't look stupid - no reason not to."

Cycling UK believes there is "no justification for making helmet-wearing compulsory", arguing it could "undermine levels of cycle use".

It adds: "In any case, the effectiveness of helmets is far from clear."

The charity said: "Evidence shows that the health benefits of cycling are so much greater than the relatively low risks involved, that even if these measures caused only a very small reduction in cycle use, this would still almost certainly mean far more lives being lost through physical inactivity than helmets could possibly save, however effective."

The policing resources required to enforce a ban would be "grossly disproportionate to any possible benefits", it added.

The government is currently carrying out a cycling safety review designed to reflect public concern over safety on the roads.

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