Cyklisters hjälmanvändning i ett regionalt perspektiv: fokusgruppsintervjuer samt analys av olycks- och skadedata

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Susanne Gustafsson

The objective of the present study was to obtain knowledge about bicycle helmet use and its variations across Sweden. First, data on cyclists’ accidents, injuries and helmet use were studied in terms of regional differences. These data were taken from hospital reported accidents in the database Strada (Swedish Traffic Accident Data Acquisition) and from VTI’s observational studies of bicycle helmet use on bike routes. Cyclists aged 16 years or older were studied and especially in Stockholm, Malmö and Umeå. It is noted that in Malmö, the proportion of accidents between bicycles and motor vehicles are 25 per cent, which is a higher proportion than in the other cities. Accordingly single accidents in Malmö represent a smaller proportion (63%). In Umeå single accidents constitute a much larger percentage (81%) and collisions with motor vehicles, only eight per cent. It is unclear if there are differences in the traffic environment or operation and maintenance that may be the reason for the differences in the types of accidents. It may also be noted that the use of bicycle helmets in Stockholm is by far the highest in Sweden, both on bike routes and in accidents. In addition, the helmet use in bicycle accidents in Stockholm is lower than among observed cyclists on bike routes in traffic. It should be noted, however, that the observations are made only during daytime Monday to Friday. In the project also focus group interviews in Stockholm, Malmö and Umeå have been conducted with a total of 23 participants. These cities were selected because of differences in bicycle helmet use and to get a spread in cities with different climates and different traffic environments. The focus group interviews have given information about what affects the use or nonuse of helmets. With this knowledge measures could be performed and lead to a higher helmet use throughout the country.

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