Project: Cycle Helmet Wearing in 2008

Reference: T101J

Last update: 11/12/2009 15:58:27

Objectives

The aim of the contract is to undertake a survey of pedal cycle helmet wearing rates, to build on previous surveys undertaken in 1994, 1996, 1999, 2002, 2004 and 2006.

The specific objectives of the survey are:

- To ascertain cycle helmet wearing rates on major and minor built-up roads in 2008, building on previous surveys
- To identify and deliver any improvements to previous surveys, in terms of methodology and/or implementation
- To report the findings of the major and minor built-up roads surveys in a format that is consistent with previous reports, including analyses of differences by age, gender and other factors
- To report changes in wearing rates over time by comparing results with previous surveys

Description

In 2006, there were 146 fatal, 2,296 seriously injured and 13,754 slightly injured pedal cycle casualties recorded by the police on STATS19 . Previous research suggests this is an underestimate of the actual number of cycling casualties and that about 50 percent of pedal cycle casualties have a head/face injury.

DfT encourages safer cycling and under the road safety strategy it recommends that cyclists wear cycle helmets. Tomorrow's Roads - Safer for Everyone , published by the then Department for Transport, Local Government and the Regions in March 2000, states that 'Our strategy is to improve the conditions for vulnerable road users and to encourage them to protect themselves ... This includes ... schemes to promote cycle helmets'. Tomorrow's Roads - Safer for Everyone also commits DfT to monitoring wearing rates.

DfT wishes to commission a survey of pedal cycle helmet wearing rates, to build on previous surveys undertaken in 1994, 1996, 1999, 2002, 2004 and 2006. An observational survey of actual pedal cycle helmet wearing rates enables DfT to assess over time changes in wearing rate patterns and to inform policy on the use of cycle helmets.

Contractor(s)

TRL Limited
Crowthorne House, Nine Mile Ride, Wokingham, Berkshire, RG40 3GA
+44 (0)1344 773131

Accent Marketing & Research
Gable House, 14-16 Turnham Green Terrace, London, W4 1QP

Contract details

Cost to the Department: £81,097.00

Actual start date: 04 July 2008

Actual completion date: 22 May 2009

Publication(s)

Cycle helmet wearing in 2008
Author: C Sharratt, L Walter, O Anjum
Publication date: 24/09/2009
£35.00
ISBN: 978-1-84608-805-6
Source: TRL website
More information: http://www.trl.co.uk/online_store/reports_publications/trl_reports/cat_road_user_safety/report_cycle_helmet_wearing_in_2008.htm

Cycle helmet wearing in 2008 - Findings
Author: C Sharratt, L Walter, O Anjum
Publication date: 24/09/2009
£0.00
ISBN: 978-1-84608-805-6
Source: DfT website
More information: http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/roadsafety/research/rsrr/theme1/cyclehelmetwearing2008.pdf

Summary of results

  1. Main findings

    The 2008 survey on major built-up roads showed that:

    . Cycle helmet wearing was 34.3%. This is an increase from 30.7% in 2006 and follows the trend of an increase in cycle helmet wearing each year that the survey has been carried out since 1994, when it was 16.0%.
    . The increase was accounted for by the increase in adults (both male and female) wearing helmets at 35.3%, as there was no change to the child helmet wearing rate at 17.6% and the rate for male child cyclists actually declined to 13.1%.
    . As in previous surveys, the cycle helmet wearing rates at the London sites were significantly higher at 69.5% than sites outside London at 29.9%. For adult cyclists in London, the strongest effect on wearing rate was time of day, with cyclists more likely to wear a helmet at peak times. Adult cyclists in other cities on weekdays were more likely to wear a helmet at peak times in wet weather.

    The 2008 survey on minor built-up roads showed that:

    . The overall wearing rate has increased to 16.7% from 13.8% in 2006. The rate has increased each year that the survey has been carried out since 1999.
    . When analysing the data by age and gender, the helmet wearing rate for boys aged 11-16 decreased to 7.0% and the rate for boys aged 7-10 is still low at 11.6%.
    . The wearing rate for adult cyclists was 18.2%, compared to 12.0% for child cyclists. Female children were most likely to wear a helmet, followed by female adults, male adults, and male children.