Cycling in Brisbane Australia
Just a quick heads up. I have heard from another group that there was a recent study commissioned by Qld Transport into helmets and helmet laws, and that the results of the study were apparently not supportive of the current laws.
This group (CBD Bug http://www.cbdbug.org.au) is applying to get hold of the report under freedom of information legislation.
If I get hold of a copy of the report I will post it here. I hope it gives some further weight to the argument for a repeal of the law.
I've been onto this too... The study, commissioned by the State Government, was conducted by CARRS-Q here at QUT in Brisbane. The findings were reported to the Transport Minister (Rachel Nolan at the time) at the end of September, 2010 and they got no further than her desk.
Rumor has it that one of the findings would have been favourable to bike share schemes particularly. I have written to the Government asking for a copy of the study - it is curiously not available for public viewing. They (Mike Stapleton - Executive Director of Road Safety) wrote to me. I quote:
"The department is currently working with the Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety - Queensland to finalise the report. A copy of the final report will be sent to you once it is available."
So... I suspect I'll be receiving the sanitised and 'newly finalised' version of the report that was finalised last year. I don't know about you, but that response really made my blood boil...
It will be interesting to see if the CBD BUG gets any more out of them.
I should add that the reply from Mike Stapleton was sent in mid March, 2011. The original letter he wrote to me which alerted me to the study was sent in mid September, 2010.
The lead investigator was Prof Narelle Haworth - I have copied her all my letters requesting information about the study. She hasn't even bothered to acknowledge receipt of them which is rather rude. Feel free to email her...
I tried the formal way - letter & email. No response. She may well have been asked to signa non-disclosure agreement of some sort. If so, that is very, very odd for a supposedly 'open' study.
Let me know how you go...
It really frustrates me that independent research isn't really independent any more...
The same can be said of medical research around the world. If there is no obvious financial benefit *before* the research is even started, often it doesn't receive funding. Sad.
It really should be as simple as: CARRS-Q does the study; they publish it; we (& Gov) read it; end of story...
I'm sure the researchers are less than impressed by having their wings clipped. What on earth do their respective 'legal departments' have to do with this? (rhetorical question obviously). Welcome to 1984.
I haven't had a refusal, but I've been strung along while they 're-finalise' it... The CBD BUG has made a formal FOI request as far as I'm aware. It will be interesting to see what response they receive.
I can't understand why a trial helmet exemption (not a ban, but an exemption!) for CityCycle would be such a bad thing. They can just add another line to their multi-page 'Terms & Conditions' that subscribers have to sign.
If they do have an exemption, I really hope the opportunity to study its effects are not lost.