It’s time Whitehorse stepped up enforcement of its bike helmet bylaw.
So far this summer, we’ve seen dozens of people riding city streets sans lid. And we haven’t seen bylaw officers cracking down on the scofflaws.
In the last couple of years, people have developed a misconception about helmets.
They think it’s their personal choice whether they wear the things or not.
Cyclists are required to wear them by law. Failure to do so can have several unexpected nasty consequences, the best being a $25 fine from the city, the worst being your brains spilling out on the asphalt.
Given Canada’s national health-care system, citizens have an obligation to take precautions to prevent injuries. Those injuries cost everyone a pile of cash. Which is one of the reasons governments enforce the use of seat belts in cars, and helmets on bikes and motorcycles.
They also pass these laws because people are too stubborn to wear them voluntarily. It’s amazing how the threat of a stiff fine can convince people to make smart choices.
Cyclists may have a God-given right to feel the wind in their hair and their blood flowing onto the street. But bylaw has a council-voted obligation to make them pay $25 for that ill-considered logic.
Far too many Whitehorse cyclists seem to have forgotten the law.
It is time bylaw officers gave them a reminder. (Richard Mostyn)