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BMJ Open. 2012 Jun 18;2(3). pii: e001049. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2012-001049. Print 2012.

Helmet use in BIXI cyclists in Toronto, Canada: an observational study.

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1
Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To investigate the use of helmets for cyclists choosing to use BIXI bikes in comparison to personal bike riders in the City of Toronto.

DESIGN:

Cross-sectional study design.

SETTING:

Cyclists were observed in Toronto, Canada.

PARTICIPANTS:

Of the 6732 sample size, 306 cyclists on BIXI bikes and 6426 personal bike riders were observed.

OUTCOME MEASURE:

The outcome of interest was helmet use.

RESULTS:

Overall, 50.3% of cyclists wore helmets. The proportion of BIXI bike riders using helmets was significantly lower than the proportion of helmet users on personal bikes (20.9% vs 51.7%, respectively, p<0.0001).

CONCLUSIONS:

Although the BIXI bike programme has provided an alternate means for Torontonians to use a bicycle, cyclists using BIXI bikes are much less likely to wear a helmet. Since the prevalence of helmet use in cyclists in general is already low, helmet use should be especially promoted in BIXI bike riders in order to promote a safe and healthy environment for cyclists.

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