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Last Updated: Wednesday September 23 2009 10:42 GMT

Should you be forced to wear bike helmets?


A group of top doctors are saying children should be forced to wear helmets when they're out on their bikes.

They say it should be against the law for people younger than 16 to cycle without one, because they can stop you getting hurt in an accident.

Do you wear a helmet to stay safe? Should kids be punished if they don't put one one?

Or do you think they are uncomfortable or unfashionable? Should it be up you whether you use a helmet or not?

Unfortunately this topic is now closed but there are Comments pages on other subjects on the main Chat index.

Your comments

"It is a good idea when you are young it but I think once you are a certain age and are more responsible and can ride safely, the choice should be yours."

Sian, 10, Kent, England

"I always wear mine but some of my friends don't! I'd rather be safe than sorry!"

Willamina, 9, London, England

"Yes I think that the amount of accidents that happen each year involving people not wearing helmets is unbelievable!!! So yes I think we should be forced to wear one!!!"

Lauren, 11, Wales

"I think it's up to someone's parents or guardians to decide if their kids should wear a helmet or not and also the parents should make sure their kid is doing all they can on the road to be safe."

Mo, 10, Buckinghamshire, England

"Yes, because it's safer."

Ben, 10, Glasgow, Scotland

"I really think that you should be made to wear a helmet because you could get hurt without one. I always wear one but my friends don't and they make fun of me. But I tell them they are silly because they are going to get injured."

Lizzie, 7, Kent, England

"I personally think it's our choice if we should wear cycling helmets. Our parents tell us to, but it's not them that's got to wear the helmets."

Amy, 12, Inverness, Scotland

"It's a good idea for it to be a law on the road, but I agree with Ben, it's a bit much in the park, you'd feel like an eejit!"

Adam, 9, Belfast, N. Ireland

"I am from England but I live in California. Over here it is the law to wear a helmet under the age of 18. I think that is sensible because if you don't it is a cause of brain damage. Also, everyone here wears a helmet and no-one makes a fuss. I would rather wear a helmet than get hurt."

Isabelle, 11, California, USA

"I cycle down my street and I don't wear one, but I would if they were more fashionable and comfortable."

Miranda, 10, Glasgow, Scotland

"Yes, it should be made the law because the only reason people don't wear helmets is because they would be made fun of. So if everyone wore one then no-one would be made fun of."

Alice, 12, England

"I think that it's a good idea, but only if they make the helmets more comfortable and fashionable. Now, it's not cool to wear a helmet."

Cath, 13, Kent, England

"Yes, it should be law that all bike riders should wear helmets, including adults, as they should be setting examples."

Jack, 13, Salisbury, England

"No, not if we have a adult with us at the time that we are riding our bike."

Georgina, 10, Huntington, England

"I think it's up to the biker whether they should wear bike helmets or not. Even though it's dangerous not wearing one the biker would know what risk they are putting themselves in for."

Elle, 11, Brighton, England

"I think that it should be made law. I don't wear a helmet because people would make fun of me for wearing one, but if it became law they wouldn't. It would encourage me to ride my bike more because at the moment I am scared that I will fall, so I don't cycle."

Ellen, 13, Edinburgh, Scotland

"You only really have to wear your helmet when you're on the road, at cycling tracks and around cars. To have to wear your helmet all the time like at the park is just over protective."

Ben, 11, London, England

"I wear a helmet, but I usually feel embarrassed when I cycle to school because no one else wears one. At least if it becomes a law to wear one maybe people will feel less embarrassed about wearing one because everyone else is. "

Elly, 14, Guildford, England

"It depends. I only use my bike for very short journeys, only about a quarter of a mile. I don't go on any main roads, so it would seem like a complete waste of money. I cycle several times a week and have never fallen off my bike."

Lizzie, 13, Birmingham, England

"I think more kids should wear their helmets. I wear mine."

Boaz, 9, Liverpool, UK

"I think they should not be compulsory, I always wear my helmet so it wouldn't actually affect me. I'm sure that obesity in children and car exhausts are much more of a health risk in the long run and that is the effect making helmets compulsory would cause. No kids would listen to that law anyway."

Charlotte, 14, Cambridge, England

"I think everyone should wear a bike helmet. When I was six I came off my bike. I had no helmet on. I fractured my skull and now have to wear a hearing aid because it damaged the hearing in my right ear."

Declan, 9, Oldham, UK

"I think we should be forced to wear helmets because they can help you gain confidence while riding a bike, because if you fall you would not be hurt as much as if you did not. Who knows there could be designer helmets and they could be a fashion trend."

Maddy, 14, Chepstow, Wales

"I don't wear a helmet, but I think it is our own responsibility to wear one and we can't be forced to. Everyone I know doesn't wear a helmet, I know that isn't a good thing but the government is never going to get every teenager in the country to wear one because we are all so fussy about looks."

Poppy, 13, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire

"I don't think we should be forced to. It's our right to decide whether we want to wear it or not, if they take that right away most children will not want to ride at all and then this country will become unhealthier than it already is. I don't wear a helmet but I don't use my bike much anyway. I wouldn't at all if I had to wear a helmet - we'd be made fun of where I live."

Samantha, 12, Motherwell, UK

"I would wear a helmet if they were more comfortable and fashionable. If it become a law, I would not ride my bike."

Mollie, 13, Coventry, England

"When you have your helmet on you feel that if you fall off your bike you will be fine so you don't be very careful. If you don't have a helmet on then you are more careful and you know that it is really going to hurt."

Lewis, 12, Edinburgh, Scotland

"Yes, I think everyone should wear a helmet to protect themselves if they fall off."

Charlotte, 14, Melton Mowbray, England

"I think it won't work because I fell off my bike while my bike helmet was on, and I still badly hurt my head."

Charlotte, 12, Dartford, England

"Kids think helmets are for wimps. I don't, but that's why they don't wear them."

Beth, 12, Glasgow, Scotland

"I always wear a helmet, you should. What happens if you fall off? You could be really badly injured."

Jessica, 12, Northamptonshire, England

"I think if you live on a quiet road away from main roads it's OK, but if you are going off the road it can be quite dangerous."

Cerys, 10, Leicestershire, England

"I don't think we should be forced to because I only use my bike in short journeys around the village and there are very few cars. I don't need a helmet, so it would stop me using my bike."

Harry, 14, Cambridge, England

"I don't wear helmets because people call you a nerd in our town."

Georgia, 10, Yorkshire, England

"Yes, I think it should be the law! People can't complain about them being uncomfortable or not fitting their heads because there are sizes for everyone, and that helmet might just save your life."

Hannah, 13, Shropshire, England

"I think so, because I hit the curb of the road, but I was wearing my helmet. I would have cracked my head open if I hadn't worn it!"

Georgie, 12, Surrey, England

"I don't think it's such a good idea. Me and a lot of my mates don't like the look of them and I wouldn't go on my bike if I had to wear one."

Roger, 14, Leicester, England

"I think it won't work because I fell of my bike while my bike helmet was on, and I still badly hurt my head."

Charlotte, 11, Kent, England

"It is good but it will make me stop riding to school because the helmet itches."

Ethan, 11, Essex, England

"I think that everyone should have to wear a helmet, not just under 16s. Everyone can fall and get hurt, so everyone should protect themselves."

Lizzie, 11, Scotland

"The people will make you wear a helmet, then probably arm pads, shin pads and the CYCLE will go on! Lol."

Ben, 12, Northampton, England

"Well, I think that it depends on how long you will be riding for and where you are going to ride . I find them a bit too uncomfortable, but they are vital to being safe."

Megan, 11, Wales

"I think that boys and girls under the age of 16 should wear cycle helmets because it's much safer and you're most likely to ride in the road and get knocked over by a car or a van than a 16-year-old would."

James, 13, London, England

"I think when it's hot it is hard to wear a helmet because it rubs."

Adam, 13, Birmingham, England

"I don't wear a helmet because they're uncool and uncomfy."

Paul, 12, Liverpool, England

"I think it's really horrible wearing a helmet, especially to school, because once you get to school there is nowhere to put it and it becomes a pain!!"

Lucy, 13, Northampton, England

"I think the way they are doing the law is silly. It should be like seatbelts, a law for everyone not just under 16s. This just makes it seem OK for adults not to wear them."

Mickey, 11, Brighton, England

"I think you should have to wear a helmet because, like the doctors say, it can save lives."

Alexander, 11, Ipswich, England

"I don't like wearing my helmet, but I think it should be the law to stop people having head injuries."

Maisie, 12, Faversham, England

"I think you should have to wear bike helmets, it makes sense. I think helmets should be less bulky. Maybe that's why kids don't wear them, they look as if they might weigh you down."

Kirsti , 13, Maybole, Scotland

"I don't think we should be forced to but I think wearing a helmet is very important."

Lydia, 10, England

"I go out on my bike every morning and don't wear my helmet because it is really uncomfortable and mine looks silly on me! But I do worry that if I fell off I could really seriously hurt myself."

Jasmine, 13

"I think we should because my cousin fell off his bike and hurt his head badly and nearly got ran over!!"

Mariam, 11, Glasgow, Scotland

"I don't think they should force you to wear a helmet because I don't think a bunch of doctors should tell us what to do."

Hudson, 11, Cape Town, South Africa

"Everyone should wear helmets - if you're a child or not! It doesn't make a difference if you're an adult, you can still get hurt. I always wear a helmet but my dada doesn't. I think he should. I think being forced to wear a helmet isn't as bad, it's better then ending up in a hospital!!!!"

Catherine, 12, Kerry, Ireland

"As a child myself I believe that children should be encouraged but not forced to wear helmets. Most children do not wish to wear all the protective gear and most of the time don't need it. Forcing us is not the answer!!"

Katie, 12, Sauchie, Scotland

"I think everyone should wear one because you could get killed or seriously hurt if you fell off your bike without wearing one."

Kirsten, 10, Inverness, Scotland