Bike Helmets Become Mandatory in All Communities April 1

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In keeping with the Provincial Government’s commitment to promoting healthier and safer communities, bike helmets will be required to be worn by bicyclists on streets and roads throughout the province effective April 1.

To discuss this new requirement and demonstrate how to select a helmet that fits properly the Honourable Dan Crummell, Minister of Service NL, joined safety advocates, police and youth at the Boys and Girls Clubs of St. John’s today.

“A properly fitted helmet can decrease the risk of serious head injury by as much as 85 per cent. Working collaboratively with safety advocates and law enforcement, we have achieved a new safety standard that will protect children and families in all communities throughout Newfoundland and Labrador.”
– The Honourable Dan Crummell, Minister of Service NL

Until now, municipal by-laws governed the use of bicycle helmets. This amendment to the Highway Traffic Act was developed in close collaboration with groups such as the Newfoundland and Labrador Medical Association, the Association of Registered Nurses of Newfoundland and Labrador, Safety Services Newfoundland and Labrador, the Newfoundland Labrador Injury Prevention Coalition, the Newfoundland & Labrador Brain Injury Association, and the Department of Seniors, Wellness and Social Development.

“The Department of Seniors, Wellness and Social Development encourages people of all ages to pursue safe physical activity. Mandatory helmet use will protect people as they get exercise, and will reduce the number of serious head injuries that happen each year.”
– The Honourable Clyde Jackman, Minister of Seniors, Wellness and Social Development

At the event, Minister Crummell demonstrated the “2V1” approach to choosing a helmet. This means:

the helmet should cover the top of the forehead and rest approximately two fingers width above the eyebrows;
side straps should fit snugly around the ears in a “V” shape; and
the chin strap should be buckled and then tightened until one finger can be fit between the strap and the chin.
“Using a properly fitted helmet is the best way to protect against brain injury, which can have long-term effects on thinking, memory, movement, and personality. Safety Services Newfoundland and Labrador applauds the Provincial Government for making bicycle helmets mandatory throughout the province, and will encourage compliance through our ‘Lids for Kids’ program.”
– Len LeRiche, President and CEO, Safety Services Newfoundland and Labrador

Information regarding mandatory bicycle helmet use can be found at: www.gov.nl.ca/BikeHelmet/.

QUICK FACTS

Effective April 1, 2015, all bicyclists will be required to wear a bicycle helmet when cycling on public roadways in Newfoundland and Labrador.
Fines for not wearing a bicycle helmet while riding will range from $25 to $180.
Parents of children under 16 will be responsible if they knowingly allow their children to cycle without a helmet.
In support of today’s announcement, local Canadian Tire Dealers donated 100 helmets to the Boys and Girls Clubs of St. John’s.

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The Honourable Dan Crummell, Minister of Service NL, speaks with youth at the Boys and Girls Club of St. John’s about the importance of wearing a bike helmet – March 27.

Media contact:

Jason Card
Director of Communications
Service NL
709-729-4860, 699-0470
jasoncard@gov.nl.ca

Heather May
Director of Communications
Department of Seniors, Wellness and Social Development
709-729-0928, 697-5061
heathermay@gov.nl.ca

Len LeRiche
President and CEO
Safety Services Newfoundland and Labrador
lleriche@safetyservicesnl.ca
709-754-0210