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Airbag Bike Helmets likely to be 5 Times Safer than Current Foam Versions against Brain Injuries

Bicycle accidents are a leading cause of sports-related head injuries in the world due to the sheer number of bicyclists

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FILE - Israeli cyclist Paz Bash, wearing a conventional hard foam helmet, competes during the Women Elite Road Race at the UCI Road World Championships, in Doha, Qatar, Oct. 15, 2016. Tests have shown that new inflatable helmets offer more protection. VOA
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Palo Alto, (California), November 3, 2016:  Bicycle helmets that utilize airbag technology instead of conventional hard foam may offer five times more protection against brain injuries, according to Stanford University researchers.

These inflatable helmets cannot be sold in the United States due to current federal regulations.

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Two sets of test dummies, one wearing a standard helmet and the other wearing one that is worn around the neck and inflates like an airbag when it senses a collision, were dropped from varying heights in a lab to simulate bicycle accidents.

“It was a big difference,” Stanford University bioengineer David Camarillo said.

[bctt tweet=”Bicycle accidents are a leading cause of sports-related head injuries in the world due to the sheer number of bicyclists. ” username=””]

Conventional helmets, according to Camarillo, are designed to prevent skull fractures but do not protect well against injuries such as concussions, which can occur when neurons in the brain stretch due to impact forces sustained during an
accident.

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Airbag helmets, which are available for sale in parts of Europe, are typically successful in protecting the brain from impact force but pose risks because they can fail to deploy properly.

“You can actually be at more risk of injury compared to a standard helmet,” said Mehmet Kurk, another member of the research team that conducted the study.

If the airbag is late to deploy, the amount of pressure may not be sufficient to keep the head from making contact with the ground.

“These helmets are going to have failure modes different than conventional bike helmets, but there could be ways in which they are much safer,” said Camarillo. “You have to look at the relative risk.”

Testing unavailable in U.S.

Swedish company Hovding, which makes the airbag helmet in the Stanford study, said the technology it uses was fully tested and safe.

However, Camarillo said U.S. regulations did not reflect new research on the dangers of concussions and other brain injuries.

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The Consumer Product Safety Commission, which regulates bicycle helmets, does not even have a testing method in place for inflatable versions, he added.

As a result, he does not expect U.S. laws governing bicycle helmets to change any time soon.

“It would probably take an act of Congress,” he said. (VOA)

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  • Ruchika Kumari

    Safety comes first….I think airbag helmets are really going to save many lives

  • Shivani Vohra

    That’s a really good step towards safety of riders.

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Aadhaar Helpline Mystery: French Security Expert Tweets of doing a Full Disclosure Tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App

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Pichai met with senior Republicans on Friday to discuss their concerns, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said. Wikimedia Commons

Google’s admission that it had in 2014 inadvertently coded the 112 distress number and the UIDAI helpline number into its setup wizard for Android devices triggered another controversy on Saturday as India’s telecom regulator had only recommended the use of 112 as an emergency number in April 2015.

After a large section of smartphone users in India saw a toll-free helpline number of UIDAI saved in their phone-books by default, Google issued a statement, saying its “internal review revealed that in 2014, the then UIDAI helpline number and the 112 distress helpline number were inadvertently coded into the SetUp wizard of the Android release given to OEMs for use in India and has remained there since”.

Aadhaar Helpline Number Mystery: French security expert tweets of doing a full disclosure tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App, Image: Wikimedia Commons.

However, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) recommended only in April 2015 that the number 112 be adopted as the single emergency number for the country.

According to Google, “since the numbers get listed on a user’s contact list, these get  transferred accordingly to the contacts on any new device”.

Google was yet to comment on the new development.

Meanwhile, French security expert that goes by the name of Elliot Alderson and has been at the core of the entire Aadhaar controversy, tweeted on Saturday: “I just found something interesting. I will probably do full disclosure tomorrow”.

“I’m digging into the code of the @Google SetupWizard app and I found that”.

“As far as I can see this object is not used in the current code, so there is no implications. This is just a poor coding practice in term of security,” he further tweeted.

On Friday, both the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) as well as the telecom operators washed their hand of the issue.

While the telecom industry denied any role in the strange incident, the UIDAI said that he strange incident, the UIDAI said that some vested interests were trying to create “unwarranted confusion” in the public and clarified that it had not asked any manufacturer or telecom service provider to provide any such facility.

Twitter was abuzz with the new development after a huge uproar due to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) Chairman R.S. Sharma’s open Aadhaar challenge to critics and hackers.

Ethical hackers exposed at least 14 personal details of the TRAI Chairman, including mobile numbers, home address, date of birth, PAN number and voter ID among others. (IANS)

Also Read: Why India Is Still Nowhere Near Securing Its Citizens’ Data?