Bicycle Helmet Bill

Gov. Pete Wilson should veto the bicycle helmet bill. This bill is bad; it protects insurance companies and incompetent motorists instead of children.

In California, the courts assign awards based on the percentage of guilt. If a child is struck by a car while not wearing a helmet, the insurance companies will state that the child is responsible for the injuries, thus letting the insurance company off the hook even if the motorist is completely responsible.

If the writers of the bill were interested in the well-being of children they would have included a clause addressing this concern. But they didn't despite the advice of bicyclist organizations. The result has been opposition from almost every bicyclist organization in the state.

As Chairman of the Safety Committee of the Orange County Bicycle Coalition, I'm troubled that a bill intended to improve bicycling safety would be so bad that we would oppose it. But we have no doubt this bill would make a bad law.

PETER JACOBSEN

Orange

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