The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Lifestyles

October 5, 2012

Parents urged to make sure young bicyclists wear helmets

Nothing seems more natural than a kid on a bicycle, but most parents find it's easier to get their child to eat their broccoli than to wear a helmet when they ride.

But maybe parents should give up on the vegetables and spend their energy on the bike helmet since it could prevent a serious injury or even death. 

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC), head injury is the most common cause of death and serious disability from bicycle crashes. The best protection is the bicycle helmet.

However, few bicyclists wear helmets regularly, and children are less inclined to wear helmets than adults. National estimates of helmet use among children range from only 15 to 25 percent.

Proving helmets' effectiveness

Neurosurgeon Tobias Mattei, MD, and his research team at the Illinois Neurological Institute and Bradley University set out to prove a point. They tested how well helmets withstood forces of impact and crush tests when covering human cadaver skulls.

They found that wearing a helmet can reduce the acceleration experienced by the skull during an impact by up to 87 percent, and can aid the skull in resisting forces up to 470 pounds in a crush accident. In most crashes that's enough to result in only minor injury with a helmet. Without a helmet, it could be fatal.

The researchers filled a number of human cadaver skulls with BBs and resin cement to provide a uniform weight of four pounds. They used an apparatus that could test both impact and compression injuries.

The skull and helmet were released in free-fall from heights ranging from six to 48 inches, landing on a flat steel impact anvil. Unprotected skulls also were tested in falls from six and nine-inch heights.

Significant protection

Helmet use was found to reduce impact acceleration up to 87 percent at a drop height of six inches and more than 76 percent at a drop height of nine inches. In terms of real life effects, the tests show that wearing a helmet can reduce the force of a head impact during an accident occurring at 30 miles per hour to the force of a head impact occurring at seven miles per hour.

Text Only
Lifestyles
  • Screen shot 2014-04-11 at 4.49.09 PM.png Train, entertain your pets with these 3 smartphone apps

    While they may not have thumbs to use the phone, pets can benefit from smartphone apps designed specifically for them.

    April 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • Alternatives available for addicts DEAR ANNIE: I enjoy reading your column and agree with most of your advice, including your recommendations when it comes to handling alcohol addictions and binge drinking. I do not work in this field, but I've seen alternatives to AA that may be more

    April 12, 2014

  • Peace Soup Peace Soup completes 7th year CLINTON -- Peace Soup concluded its seventh year this week. Peace Soup was held for five Tuesdays during the Lenten season. The series for 2014, "Interfaith Connections to Peace," featured the topic of Christianity. Elizabeth Liggett, pastor at St.

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Milkweed plants Raising awareness of milkweed MAQUOKETA -- The Hurstville Interpretive Center will attempt to raise public awareness about milkweed plants. The center is holding a plant sale for area residents to try to include more milkweed plants in the region for monarch butterflies. The sale

    April 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • Women's club extends sale CLINTON -- The Clinton Women's Club has extended the deadline for the group's annual silent auction. The deadline for bids is through Saturday for the purse and bag silent auction at the George Curtis Mansion, 420 Fifth Ave. South. During this past w

    April 9, 2014

  • Churches band together CLINTON -- Downtown churches will participate in the annual Way of the Cross next week. The 17th annual event will be held April 18 in downtown Clinton, signifying Good Friday. The community is invited to join in this event. Individuals may participa

    April 9, 2014

  • RV to take university 'mobile museum' on road IOWA CITY (AP) -- A 38-foot-long recreational vehicle sponsored by the University of Iowa will soon travel Iowa promoting the state's rich history. The Mobile Museum is expected to make its inaugural appearance in Fort Dodge this weekend, and stops i

    April 8, 2014

  • Woman's event at dealership CLINTON -- Clinton's Harley Davidson motorcycle facility will host a women's event this month. The Ladies Only Garage Party will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Saturday, April 26, at Clinton Harley-Davidson, 2519 Lincoln Way. The Garage Party is a way for

    April 8, 2014

  • Plunge for Landon Community taking a dive for young cancer patient KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Being told to "go jump in a lake" is usually a snarky kiss-off. But it's become a heartwarming call-to-action for a Missouri community whose effort to help the family of a 5-month-old boy with cancer has inspired thousands across

    April 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pot of Gold Funding education CLINTON -- Residents are invited to test their luck and knowledge later this month at a fundraiser for Prince of Peace Schools. For more than 10 years, the Pot O' Blue and Gold Raffle has been one of the major fundraisers for the district. With Princ

    April 7, 2014 1 Photo

Elections
Front page
Clinton Herald Photos


Browse, buy and submit pictures with our photo site.

Poll

Should the city of Clinton appeal the open records violation ruling that will cost taxpayers $40,600?

Yes
No
     View Results
AP Video
Olympics 2014
Featured Comment
Featured Ads
Blue Zones Project
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.