Kshama Sawant bats down bike helmet law repeal

Apr 9, 2016, 8:10 AM | Updated: Apr 10, 2016, 9:59 pm
Seattle City Council member Kshama Sawant says she wouldn't support repealing a mandatory bike helm...
Seattle City Council member Kshama Sawant says she wouldn't support repealing a mandatory bike helmet law. (AP)

There’s been a dangerous movement in the the bike activist community to push for the repeal of King County’s mandatory helmet law.

The bike activist community sees unacceptably low numbers of bike commuters (less than 4%) in a city that’s spending and committing tens of millions of dollars to bike infrastructure projects. Consequently, they look to everything and anything to explain the lack of ridership. You’ve heard the excuse that Pronto! has been such a failure because there simply aren’t enough stations.

But there’s also the argument that mandating riders wear helmets actually keeps riders away.

It’s a dangerous argument, particularly in a city with such wet weather, hills and a growing amount of streets with streetcar tracks on them. It’s a dangerous argument that Seattle City Councilwoman Kshama Sawant isn’t buying.

Related: City of Seattle finally concedes that bicyclists can be dangerous

Councilmember Sawant recently appeared on City Inside/Out: Council Edition (h/t to the Reddit community for spotting this) and said:

Did I hear you right, there’s somebody who wants to repeal the [mandatory helmet law]? … I definitely would not support… In fact, just two days ago… somebody I know actually, his cycle tire sort of got stuck in one of those streetcar tracks and because it was raining, the roads were slick and he got pushed against a car. And when he fell, and he now has a concussion. He’s only safe because of a helmet. And that’s just one anecdotal evidence of the massive statistical evidence that we absolutely need… I don’t think we should revisit that in any way in the public good.

Right on. The City tends to kowtow to the more extreme elements of the bicycle community, but this is the second time in a week  where we’re hearing officials taking common sense stances on bicycle safety.

Jason Rantz on AM 770 KTTH
  • listen to jason rantzTune in to AM 770 KTTH weekdays at 3-6pm toThe Jason Rantz Show.

Jason Rantz Show

Jason Rantz

seattle police, traffic stops...
Jason Rantz

Rantz: New equity policy bars Seattle Police from some traffic stops, opens door to more car theft

Seattle Police are now barred from many non-criminal traffic stops after activists claimed concerns over equity.
2 days ago
Sheriff Fortney...
KTTH staff

Snohomish County Sheriff Fortney will run for re-election after failed recall effort

After a failed recall effort against him last year, Snohomish County Sheriff Adam Fortney says he will run for office again in 2023.
3 days ago
MultiCare hospitals...
Jason Rantz

Rantz: MultiCare hospitals order symptomatic COVID-positive staff to see patients

MultiCare Health Systems is forcing COVID-positive staff to work at its area hospitals, the Jason Rantz Show on KTTH has learned.
4 days ago
Redistricting ,senator...
KTTH staff

State senator escorted out after not submitting negative COVID test

State Senator Phil Fortunato was escorted out of the Legislative building in Olympia because he had not submitted a required negative COVID test.
4 days ago
King County Sheriff Mitzi Johanknecht, coronavirus...
KTTH staff

‘They never could figure me out’: Former King County Sheriff looks back on shortened tenure

Former King County Sheriff Mitzi Johanknecht left office at the end of 2021, and spoke to KTTH's Jason Rantz Show this week to reflect on her tenure.
4 days ago
transgender, gender...
Jason Rantz

Rantz: WA laws now allow teen gender reassignment surgery without parental consent

Washington state now appears to allow minors to undergo life-changing gender reassignment surgery without parental consent.
6 days ago

Sponsored Articles


Compassion International Is Determined to ‘Fill’ a Unique Type of Football ‘Stadium’

Compassion International SPONSORED — During this fall’s football season—and as the pandemic continues to impact the entire globe—one organization has been urging caring individuals to help it “fill” a unique type of “stadium” in order to make a lasting difference in the lives of many. Compassion International’s distinctive Fill the Stadium (FtS, fillthestadium.com) initiative provides […]

What are the Strongest, Greenest, Best Windows?

Lake Washington Windows & Doors SPONSORED — Fiberglass windows are an excellent choice for window replacement due to their fundamental strength and durability. There is no other type of window that lasts as long as fiberglass; so why go with anything else? Fiberglass windows are 8x stronger than vinyl, lower maintenance than wood, more thermally […]

COVID Vaccine is a Game-Changer for Keeping our Kids Healthy

Snohomish Health District SPONSORED — Cheers to the parents and guardians who keep their kids safe and healthy. The dad who cooks a meal with something green in it, even though he’s tired and drive-thru burgers were tempting. The mom who calms down the little one who loudly and resolutely does NOT want to brush […]
Experience Anacortes

Coastal Christmas Celebration Week in Anacortes

With minimal travel time required and every activity under the sun, Anacortes is the perfect vacation spot for all ages.

Delayed-Onset PTSD: Signs and Symptoms

Lakeside-Milam Recovery Centers SPONSORED — You’re probably familiar with post-traumatic stress disorder. Often abbreviated as PTSD, this condition is diagnosed when a person experiences a set of symptoms for at least a month after a traumatic event. However, for some people, these issues take longer to develop. This results in a diagnosis of delayed-onset PTSD […]

Medicare open enrollment ends Dec. 7. Free unbiased help is here!

Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner SPONSORED — Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, also called the Annual Election Period, is Oct. 15 to Dec. 7. During this time, people enrolled in Medicare can: Switch from Original Medicare to a Medicare Advantage plan and vice versa. Join, drop or switch a Part D prescription drug plan, […]
Kshama Sawant bats down bike helmet law repeal