Jersey has become the first of the British Isles to introduce a law making it compulsory for children up to and including the age of 13 to wear a cycle helmet whilst on their bikes.
The legislation will be ‘sensibly enforced’ and has been put in place to encourage safety rather than focusing on any penalty. It is hoped this will have a knock on effect to cyclists of all ages. To ensure that safety is maximised, helmets should meet EU safety standards and must be fitted correctly. It is also a requirement for under 14’s to wear a helmet for children riding in trailers drawn by a bicycle.
Mark Harris from Headway will be joining Philip Blake (Road Safety Office) to provide educational talks to Primary and Secondary Schools island wide over the next few months. They will showing students how to fit their helmets on correctly and discuss how important it is to wear protective head wear whilst cycling.
Deputy Andrew Green MBE first proposed the introduction of this in 2010 and the legislation was passed in July of this year. The law has been welcomed by Headway the Brain Injury Association who regard it as a ‘momentous landmark in child protection’. The Child Brain Injury Trust and Bicycle Helmet Initiative Trust are also highly supportive of the decision. As many of you may know Deputy Green, who is also the Chairman of Headway UK, has personal experience of the consequences of not wearing a cycle helmet as his son acquired a severe brain injury after he was knocked off a bike as a 9 year old child.
Jersey joins several other countries and jurisdictions across the world with similar legislation and it is very much hoped by many that the UK will be the next
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