Anneka Brown: Teach us, don’t preach at us

Saturday October 12, 2019 Written by Published in Opinion
Security guard Chris Denny says he never wore a helmet until he saw the carnage of crashes like last month’s fatal accident at Kiikii, in which Tumii Tumii died. 19091639 Security guard Chris Denny says he never wore a helmet until he saw the carnage of crashes like last month’s fatal accident at Kiikii, in which Tumii Tumii died. 19091639

When the helmet law was first introduced, I had just turned 16. I was able to get a secondhand bike and a licence.

OPINION: The police had come to a school assembly to tell the students about the new law.

The law felt really inconvenient, and at the time the helmets that were available to purchase were big and heavy and expensive.

To enforce the law, the police had a checkpoint every morning only 10 metres away from the school’s entrance and then they had two checkpoints covering both ends of the road.

Students were stopped by the police and fined for not wearing a helmet and slowly the resistance to the law started to build.

I’m sure the police were making a lot of money off school students. It’s a $100 fine.

Avoiding an encounter with a rude police officer was the main reason why I wore my helmet all the time.

Then they started confiscating motorcycles and locking them up which I thought was a bit extreme; they even had checkpoints on the back roads too, it was crazy.

But still there were still students not abiding by the law.

It was so bad that student leaders would have to stay back and watch people go home to check if they were wearing a helmet. But still, none of it worked. 

I got stopped once. Telling the police you forgot your helmet at home doesn’t really work, so I got really creative with some very elaborate lies. That was only one time and they let me off but not before trying to intimidate me.

To wear a helmet or not to wear a helmet is high on the public agenda.

Wearing a helmet should be promoted – not enforced.

Like Chris Denny has said, he never wore a helmet until he saw the carnage every week from bike accidents.

So I say, stop punishing us and give us reason and encouragement.

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