Helmet Safety

May 9, 2018 | Cycle Safety, School Zone Safety

Written by Kerry Darlington & Jessica Leeks

May is Bike to work month and there are prizes to be won for your participation!
Find out more at EnviroCentre’s website https://biketoworkottawa.ca/

Why Wearing a Helmet is Important

Head injuries are very serious especially with young children as it not only affects their lives and development but affects the lives of their families. The Ontario the Highway Traffic Act makes it mandatory for anyone under the age of 18 to wear a certified helmet while riding a bicycle. Wearing a helmet can prevent 70-90% of head injuries.

certification sticker within a helmet

Above is a certification sticker located within a helmet.

Bicycle Helmets are Single Impact

With bicycle helmets, they are designed to take 1 single impact. This means your helmet must be replaced after a crash or a hard hit, even if it does not appear to have any damage.

Here at the Ottawa Safety Council, we like to teach the 2 V 1 rules for ensuring proper helmet fit. Learn more about 2 V 1 below.

blue and white bicycle helmet that has suffered from an accident

Above is a helmet that has been through a crash, some damaged helmets do not show that they have been damaged.

What to Look for When Buying a Helmet

When buying a helmet be sure to:

  1. Check that it has the certification sticker. This can be found inside or outside of the helmet. They can be certified by CSA, CPSC, ASTM or Snell.
  2. Buy a helmet that fits right now, not one that you will grow into.
  3. Never buy a used helmet. They can be passed down to a younger child as long as they have never been in a crash.
  4. Replace a helmet after 5 years or a crash

bicycle helmet on white background

How to Make Sure the Helmet is the Correct Size

Be sure when you are looking for a new helmet that you follow the 2V1 rule to get the correct fit:

2 fingers-width of space between your eyebrows and helmet.

V shape made by the straps, starting under your ears, up to your helmet

finger-width of space between the bottom of your chin and chin-strap

These simple rules are easy to remember and will help ensure a proper fit!

Be sure to take a look at the Ottawa Safety Councils Cycle Safe, Bike Rodeos.

Click here to learn more!