Annual Public Campaign Promote Safe Cycling In The Czech Republic
In 2021, 43 cyclists lost their lives across the Czech Republic, three more than the previous year. 234 cyclists were seriously injured on the roads, a drop of 42 year-on-year. 70% of the victims were not wearing a helmet while riding. Every year before the summer season, the peak period for cycling accidents, the Road Safety Team, Czech Mountain Service, Czech Police, and other partners run a nationwide safety campaign, entitled Always Cycle With a Helmet (“Na kole jen s přilbou”) to remind cyclists of the importance of taking safety precautions. Photo credit: protext.cz
Czech Republic, May 31 (BD) – In the Czech Republic, wearing a helmet while cycling is compulsory for cyclists and scooter riders, up to the age of 18. “We have been drawing attention to the necessity of wearing a helmet regardless of age for a long time as part of the “Always Cycle With a Helmet” project. A minor obstacle and subsequent fall can have serious or tragic consequences for the cyclist,” said Jan Polák, Director of the Road Safety Team.
Most crashes are caused by cyclists themselves, with speeding as the most common cause of crashes. A crash can happen anytime, anywhere and to anyone, whether casual riders or those who believe they are in full control of their handlebars. Last year alone, rescuers from the Czech Mountain Rescue Service responded to 1109 accidents involving cyclists on bicycles and another 214 accidents involving scooters. In 2021, the Mountain Service also began to record accidents on electric bikes.
Always Cycle With a Helmet was established 12 years ago with the aim of reducing the accident rate and especially the consequences of traffic accidents for cyclists. This year, the Czech Police are also participating in the project, with joint preventive activities aimed at increasing the safety of cyclists by checking for mandatory equipment of bicycles and drawing attention to the common mistakes made by cyclists.
“Cyclists should protect themselves by wearing protective helmets. But they should also make themselves known to other road users, particularly by wearing reflectors or other reflective elements on their bicycle to make them visible in traffic. Their movements in traffic should be predictable to others. All road users must be considerate to each other,” explained Zuzana Pidrmanová, Head of the Prevention Department of the Czech Police.
The main objective of this project is to help reduce the number of accidents, especially the serious consequences of unsafe cycling and non-use of safety features, with a communication campaign aimed at encouraging cyclists to observe basic safety principles when cycling in cities or recreationally The project is co-financed by the claims protection fund of the Czech Insurers’ Bureau. Important partners include the Czech Police, the Czech Mountain Service, Mojekolo.cz, Toyota, and the state forestry company Lesy České republiky.