As an avid cyclist who has bicycled for 50 years, touring as well as locally, I'm delighted to have Indianola Avenue become safer and friendlier for biking, and glad to see the article in ThisWeek Booster encouraging neighborhood cycling. ("Clintonville could be model for driver-cyclist harmony, leaders say," Sept. 28.)
One thing concerned me, however, and that was the picture of Will Koehler on his bicycle. My concern is that he was not wearing a helmet. Now, I realize he was on the sidewalk, and it was likely a posed picture to encourage others to bike; however, I believe that any public pictures encouraging cycling should include wearing a helmet.
I have a friend who always wore her helmet for the organized rides as it was required. But just around in her quiet neighborhood, she didn't always bother -- until the day she went out for a short neighborhood ride without her helmet and woke up in the ER.
No one knows whether she hit a deep chuckhole or a dog came running in front of her wheel chasing a squirrel, but something caused her to fly over her handlebar and land on her head. She had a bad concussion and was on disability for four months before the headaches went away and her thought processes cleared.
I urge all cyclists, no matter how casual, to wear a helmet, because one can never be certain what might cause an accident -- even in quiet neighborhoods with no traffic.