Helmetless Riders

Curious about helmet laws? Sick of fools yelling "Where's your helmet!?"? Can't understand why a safe mode of transport like cycling has been singled out for mandatory helmet wearing? Want to ride with the breeze in your hair? This is your group.

Location: Brisbane
Members: 65
Latest Activity: Aug 11

Links you should read before you start with the "A helmet saved my life!" stories: - help repeal the all-age mandatory helmet law in Australia


Freedom Cyclist v Helmet Laws

Helmetless Riders' Group on Sydney Cyclist - lots of great educated discussion and debate has been going on in Sydney.

Mandatory Bicycle Helmet Laws in Western Australia
- local data on the issue of mandatory helmet legislation.
Cycle Helmets - An International Resource
- critical analysis of worldwide data.
Professor John Adams - Publications & Conferences

No clear evidence from countries that enforced the wearing of bicycle helmets

Discussion Forum

Any helmet harassment lately or has it gone quiet?

Started by IC. Last reply by Raymond Aug 11. 1 Reply

There doesn't seem to be much posted lately in helmetless. Is less happening or is everyone too busy elsewhere like me and no-one has enough time to write about it as much?I've found that police are…Continue

Brushes with the Law - 2016

Started by Taezar. Last reply by IC Dec 21, 2016. 26 Replies

So, just like last year....Date: 31st JanuaryTime: 8.20amLocation: Brisbane Botanical Gardens (CITY) curved rampTreatment: paved footpathBike: Basket BikeOfficers: VeloPolice Attitude: Cool and…Continue

Brushes with the Law - 2015

Started by Taezar. Last reply by Taezar Jan 1, 2016. 48 Replies

I have decided to keep a track of all my brushes with the law this year to see if there is a pattern or whether it decreases over the duration.I know, anecdotally from last year that it seemed to…Continue

Physical Letter Required

Started by Taezar. Last reply by Gavin B Dec 22, 2015. 4 Replies

Hi everyoneWith a wallet so passé given I can pay with my phone, I wanted to know if I could get away with carrying an electronic version of my exemption letter from my doctor.I have been advised,…Continue

Comment Wall


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Comment by IC on October 11, 2016 at 8:15am

The first time I got pulled up during the bikie crackdown several years ago they did so in the middle of a busy roundabout with a 3rd lane coming into it so I went further down the road to where it was safer. They accepted my stopping location only after I pointed the safety issue out but they were still arogant. After that I decided I'll stop right in the middle of an intersection if they do that again. Sure enough a year later I got pulled up at a big intersection with turn lanes so I stopped quickly on one of the trafffic islands and left him blocking the lane and other people's visibility. he didn't seem to even think about the safety hazard he was causing. All he cared about was harassing "the cyclist". He had the typical anti-cyclist attitude that people on bikes shouldn't be allowed on the road because they get in the way of cars. One of these days I'll have to put together my video footage and show police how ignorant and pathetic some of them behave. But I doubt they care about anything except their power over people and promotion.

Comment by Aaron Ball on October 11, 2016 at 7:43am
I agree. It's clearly not about safety. I was on a 2 lane road indicating to change lanes to turn right into a side street. They drove Along side me, stopping me from crossing, and asked to see my letter. I suggested we turn right and stop in the side street,where it was safe for me and he could park legally. His response was you'll pull over right now where I tell you (I went on to the footpath, he blocked the lane on yellow lines). When he pulled out his iPad to snap a pic of my letter, I asked him not to photograph it. His response was he'll do what he wants and I can't tell him what he can and can't do. That's when I pulled out my iPad and started recording.
Comment by Raymond on October 11, 2016 at 12:20am

I've been furiously researching comprehensive travel insurance policies in preparation for my solar eclipse trip next year. Cycling hardly factors into anything, other than pretty much being a normal activity like walking or using the stairs.

On the other hand, going on a cruise tends to be never included by default. Cycle all you want, almost any way you want - just don't go on cruises or binge drink. You'll probably die.

Comment by IC on October 10, 2016 at 10:32pm

I know the feeling Aaron. I got pulled up on the weekend for the first time in nearly a year I think. Their excuse " we have to pull you up because otherwise drivers complain". So basically MHL is an excuse for discrimination and State sponsored harrassment of cyclists. The cops didn't like it when I pointed out that they were the ones at far greater risk of traumatic brain injury in their car & that there are 5x more unregistered / unlicenced drivers on Qld roads than there are bicycles.

Comment by Raymond on October 10, 2016 at 4:15pm

It's okay Aaron (I wonder if they were friends with a fine Gold Coast cop rhyming with Reece Burley?) - this morning a cop car ignored a driver (without due care or attention) who just about didn't give way to me at a crossing, and then 10 minutes later another cop car didn't see me pointing at a driver heads down, both hands on their phone. Granted the cop car was two lanes across to the right but they were likely nearly as oblivious to their surroundings (I think it was a crew of 3, so things would probably have been cheery and chatty).

No disappointment so long as expectations are kept low.

Comment by Aaron Ball on October 10, 2016 at 9:07am

First proper harassment stop for the year this morning. Lots of attitude until I pulled out my iPad and started recording. Only funny part was their parting comments "it's the law and we're just doing our job" he climbs back into his patrol car parked across yellow lines.  

Comment by Rick on August 7, 2016 at 10:48pm

personally, i no longer ride my bike..   can't get an exemption letter here for it, and the 720 bucks in fines i have racked up just took all the fun out of it.  I will not wear the helmet...     not worth it..   so if anyone wants a 2013/14, nearly perfect merida T3 speeder with 560 kilometers on it, let me know.   It even has those really thick tubes in the tyres so they don't puncture unless.. well  I don't know, not punctured one yet..   

Comment by Peter Robinson on August 7, 2016 at 10:38pm

Big Steve, my two cents worth. Amongst my friends and aquaintances in bike society is a bloke who rode in the bikecentenial with Kieth Dunstan and Jeff Hook in 1976. He came home with a great new thing, a skidlid, and wore it riding in Australia. He said people would roll down their windows and yell at him for wearing it. But the abuse stopped overnight when MHL came in.

What does that tell us in view of the diametricly opposite treatment we get now for riding helmetless?

Perhaps people just like to conform? And we have short memories.

Do we like to abuse people who do not conform no matter what form it takes?

Is it something about Australian society we could really do with redressing?

Perhaps we really do need a dose of old fashioned personal rights and liberties and tolerance.

As a society we need to let people be if it harms no one else.

We are just not good at that yet.

Comment by IC on August 7, 2016 at 7:26pm

PS. Just today my highschool aged daughter (who walks to school since we live close) was telling me how the school principal sometimes waits at the school gate and if the rider doesn't wear their helmet, he confiscates their bicycle until the rider brings their helmet to school. Effectively making them walk (greater risk of abduction!) or be driven (greater risk of the driver killing a school kid & making bad traffic congestion at the school even worse!)

I pointed out to her that the principal's behaviour is illegal and what the rider does outside of school is none of his business. Reminds me I must attend a P&C meeeting one of these days.

Comment by IC on August 7, 2016 at 7:17pm

Yes Aaron & it starts in schools with so-called "safety" instructions on bicycles. A few years ago I saw a group of school kid videos about Active School Travel. Several of the videos featured "Always wear a helmet otherwise you'll crash and get a brain injury." They didn't understand or were not taught that the helmet has nothing to do with whether you'll crash in the first place. They seem to have been taught that every crash will result in a brain injury if you don't have a helmet even though in most bicycle crashes the riders do not hit their heads at all.

Mind you, you can't expect much when the people teaching Active School Travel drive to work themselves and one I know in particular has for 10 years stated to me how she hates cyclists and wishes she was allowed to run them off the road with her Land Cruiser's bullbar.


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