Cykelhjälmsanvändning i Sverige 1988–-2011: resultat från VTI:s senaste observationsstudie

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Jörgen Larsson

The total average rate of bicycle helmet use in Sweden, seen over several categories of cyclists, soared to the highest level ever in 2011. This is shown in a recent VTI observation study in 21 Swedish towns. Since 1988 VTI has performed annual observation studies of cyclists’ helmet wearing habits in Sweden. By tradition, the focus of the study lies on four main categories of cyclists: children (0–10 years) who cycle in their spare time in residential areas; children (6–15 years) who cycle to and from their primary or secondary school; adults who cycle to and from work; adults and children who cycle on cycle paths. The results show that children up to 10 years of age cycling in residential areas on average have a cycle helmet user rate of more than 69 per cent. Children cycling to and from primary or secondary school wear bicycle helmet on a lesser rate, at 64.3 per cent.

Among adults who cycle to and from work, the usage rate is just over 24 per cent. Most cyclists were observed on cycle paths and the results include all ages as well as adults only. The total number of cyclists on cycle paths displayed slightly higher helmet usage, 27.3 per cent, than the subset of adults, 25.7 per cent. The rate of bicycle helmet use in Sweden increased continuously until the end of the 1990s when stagnation occurred for some years. In 2005 the legislation requiring children up to 15 years of age to wear cycle helmet, was brought into effect. Then, helmet use increased again between 2004/2005 and 2008, again followed by a stagnation which has now been broken. The estimated rate of the average helmet use is 31.8 per cent for the year 2011, which is significantly higher than the 27.1 per cent in 2010.

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