23 November 2012, 08:25
Alok Sharma, the MP Reading West, is calling on the government to do more to encourage children to wear cycle helmets and if necessary -make it the law.
He asked the Road Safety Minister Stephen Hammond to carry out an independent report into the benefits of making the use of cycle helmets for children compulsory during a Parliamentary debate on cycling safety and the wearing of cycle helmets.
Last year more than 3,000 cyclists were killed or seriously injured on the UK's roads.
During the debate, Mr Sharma expressed his concern at the high level of hospital admissions for children with head injuries, whilst cycle helmet wearing rates for children was just 18%.
He said: "Undoubtedly, some of those injuries would have been reduced or may not have occurred if a cycle helmet had been worn."
"I think we need to be dispassionate in the way we discuss this and we need to be doing it more on the basis of evidence rather than emotion."
"When children are involved in accidents, a lot of the time that doesn't happen on the road, it happens when they are cycling off road, they may be with friends, they may be in the playground, they may be cycling in woods - that is a very clear distinction we have to bear in mind when we start to talk about cycle helmet usage, potentially compulsory, for children as opposed to adults."