FourFourSeconds ago, we reported on the latest developments in the battle against the dreaded cycle helmet.
The latest news is that a Dutch court has ruled that it’s illegal to charge a child more for a helmet.
“A person cannot be penalised for the purchase of a bicycle helmet for children under 12 years of age,” the court ruled.
This means that children under the age of 12 must not have access to a helmet unless they’ve got a “valid prescription” for the product, which can be obtained on-line.
In a statement, the Dutch Council of Economic Affairs, an independent body that oversees economic affairs, said that it had “received an application from the Council for the imposition of a fine of up to €60,000 for a person who is not authorised to prescribe a bicycle bicycle helmet and who has not complied with the requirements of the Directive”.
The statement continued: “It is clear that the use of the bicycle helmet is associated with a number of serious health consequences.
For example, it is linked to an increased risk of head injuries, the development of traumatic brain injuries and cognitive impairment.
A bicycle helmet must be used for the maximum possible number of kilometres per year.”
The Council added that the decision had been welcomed by the Dutch government, saying that it “firmly believes that it is not only a matter of individual responsibility, but of public health, that the helmet should be available to all Dutch children, including those aged between 6 and 12 years”.
The statement went on to say that, “it is also important to emphasise that it will be illegal to require parents to obtain a prescription for a bicycle bike helmet for their children, but that it would be acceptable to require them to buy one for their child”.
“Therefore, parents are encouraged to use a bicycle to transport their children when they are at school, on a journey, or when taking part in recreational activities.
Parents should not be penalized for the bicycle purchase of their children.”
This isn’t the first time the Council of European Economic Affairs has weighed in on the helmet issue.
In 2015, the body voted to extend the ban on the purchase and use of helmets for children to children under 13.