Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Children’s brains are injured in bicycle accidents – But very rarely in Sweden

Since 1978 the rate of hospitalisations of Swedish children because of head injuries related to cycling has been reduced by 93%. This means that a large number of children, instead of being severely disabled, have been able to live normal lives.

This finding is established in a study by the researchers Diana Stark Ekman, University West, and Robert Ekman, Karlstad University.

“Brain injuries in kids are absolutely horrific. They affect their ability to grow up, learn, work, fall in love, do all those wonderful things. By preventing the head injury with a helmet we prevent not only 70 or 80 years of individual suffering, but also a huge social cost,” says Diana Stark Ekman.

In 1978 0.7 children per 1000 in Sweden were hospitalised with head injuries because of bicycle accidents. The reduction has been 93% in all of Sweden. In the district of Skaraborg where helmet campaigns have been especially intense the reduction is 99%.

“Sweden in comparison with other countries is outstanding,” says Diana Stark Ekman.

The tremendous gains in safety for children who ride bicycles in Sweden can be attributed to comprehensive bicycle helmet promotion campaigns. In addition, a bicycle helmet law has been in place since 2005. It states that all bicyclists under the age of 15 must wear helmets when they are driving or riding on a bicycle.

The influential programme in the district of Skaraborg to promote bicycle helmet use has been active since the mid-1980s. It is the result of local collaborations based on the Safe Communities model. Safe Community is a concept used by the WHO. A community can be designated as a Safe Community if it fulfils certain indicators regarding systematic safety promotion for its citizens.

“The district of Skaraborg got their communities together, all the politicians, all the health care, daycare, everybody got together and said we can do something about this, and they did it without a whole lot of external help,” says Diana Stark Ekman.

Every family within the district of Skaraborg with 1-year old and 3-year old children is provided with ‘Helmet Prescriptions’ during visits to child health care clinics. These prescriptions allow for subsidised purchases of helmets in convenient locations. This is organised by the National Society for Road Safety Skaraborg group and a national insurance chain. There have also been multiple ongoing school campaigns over the years for children in different age groups.
Reference: Twenty-five years of bicycle helmet promotion for children in Skaraborg District, Sweden, Diana Stark Ekman, Robert Ekman, International Journal of Injury Control and Safety Promotion, 2012

For more information please contact:
PhD Diana Stark Ekman, University West, +46 520 22 38 83,

Associate Professor Robert Ekman, Karlstad University, +46 70 942 15 85

Research information officer Charlotta Sjöstedt, University West, + 46 733-975081,

Charlotta Sjöstedt | idw
Further information:

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht New potential cancer treatment using microwaves to target deep tumors
12.10.2016 | University of Texas at Arlington

nachricht Breakthrough in Mapping Nicotine Addiction Could Help Researchers Improve Treatment
04.10.2016 | UT Southwestern Medical Center

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Innovative technique for shaping light could solve bandwidth crunch

20.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

Finding the lightest superdeformed triaxial atomic nucleus

20.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

NASA's MAVEN mission observes ups and downs of water escape from Mars

20.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

More VideoLinks >>>