Why I always wear a bicycle helmet
I don’t bicycle without a helmet. That logic has been reinforced for me several times.
The more you ride the more you become aware of what can happen at almost any time, you can fall. I have fallen when my wheel gets stuck in sand, when a turn is covered by wet manure, when a pedestrian steps out in front of me, when my clipless pedals didn’t releasae and when another cyclists touched my wheel. For most of these falls the worse case is a broken collar bone.
But I have also been hit or driven off the road by cars and trucks. Twice in downtown Dover, NH I have been hit by cars while riding in the middle of a group of bicyclists. For some reason the driver saw the other bikes but turned through me to make a right turn. In both cases I was thrown from the bike and the back of my helmet landed on the curbing. My head hit the curbing hard enough that my glasses where thrown across the road. Both times I got up with scratches on my back and a gouge on my ankle or leg from a pedal, but no injuries. I had to get new glasses and a new helmet both times and don’t ride down Central Ave. any more on my bicycle, but I don’t feel too bad about that.
Yes, I have been lucky but how lucky would I have been without a helmet?
I live in a state that doesn’t require motorcyclist to wear helmets. I have heard them argue that they are safer without a helmet. I have also ridden a motorcycle for over 40 years and I tell them “I am not a good enough rider to ride without out a helmet yet”.
The same is true for my bicycle, I am not a good enough rider yet to ride without a helmet. I am not sure when I’ll be good enough to see a car on a busy street that is going to turn into me soon enough to prevent it every time. I do know that if you ride a 2 wheeled vehicle you will fall eventually. When I fall I want to have a helmet on.