HC Deb 05 February 1958 vol 581 cc1174-5
10. Captain Pilkington

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation whether, in order to decrease the seriousness of road accidents, he will make the wearing of crash helmets compulsory for motor-cyclists.

12. Mrs. L. Jeger

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation whether he will consider introducing legislation to make the wearing of safety helmets by motor cyclists compulsory.

Mr. Nugent

No, Sir. In this matter I think education and propaganda are better than compulsion.

Captain Pilkington

Would not it be far better to use the police to enforce the wearing of these helmets rather than to employ them on duty on the 30 m.p.h. roads?

Mr. Nugent

I think not. I think that motor-cycle riders are becoming increasingly aware of the value of these helmets. There is a satisfactory increase in the number worn and for all of us to give all the publicity we can to their value will best reach the right result.

Mrs. L. Jeger

How can the hon. Member refer to a satisfactory increase when he told the House, in reply to a Question of mine on 22nd January, that he had no figures of the number of deaths and injuries among motor-cyclists and no information about whether those killed or hurt were wearing safety helmets? Has he not been far too complacent about these terrible tragedies?

Mr. Nugent

I have not been complacent. The figures I have show that 40 per cent. of motor-cycle riders now wear helmets as compared with 1952 when scarcely any helmets were worn. That is very useful progress.