Association launches petition to make it mandatory to wear helmets on scooters

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The Novamente association wants “the protection of the brain,” which it says is “the most precious and sensitive thing we have in our organism.

The association Novamente, which supports victims of traumatic brain injury (TBI) and their families, has launched a public petition to make the use of helmets on scooters mandatory, the organization indicated today in a statement.

Pointing out that accidents with electric scooters are “a serious public health problem” and that “a fall at 20Km/h without a helmet can cause serious brain damage and death,” Novamente wants to present the request to the Assembly of the Republic to regulate this requirement.

“Where do you walk with your head? In an accident, only the helmet can prevent trauma” is the message inscribed on a poster publicizing the petition, under an image of a fall.

According to data from the National Institute of Medical Emergency (INEM), in 2022 there were 1,691 scooter accidents, a 78% increase over the previous year and an average of 141 accidents per month.

“The number of serious victims of these accidents has also increased, namely (…) victims who have brain injuries and those who require intensive care,” the statement said.

The non-profit association created by parents, doctors, and friends of people with traumatic brain injuries considers that scooters have “unquestionable advantages for the environment” and are “very practical” for those who live in cities, but notes that “in their use safety rules are often neglected” and draws attention to “the socio-economic consequences” for both families and society of those injuries.

Walk on an electric scooter
Walk on an electric scooter

According to the association, the petition has already been signed by almost 550 people, including Óscar Gaspar, former Secretary of State for Health and president of the Portuguese Association of Private Hospitalization (APHP), Rui Pego (radio broadcaster), Carlos Barbosa, president of the Automobile Club of Portugal (ACP), journalists Margarida Pinto Correia, Sónia Morais Santos and Mafalda Anjos, television presenter Júlia Pinheiro, as well as presenters and actors Diana Chaves, João Paulo Sousa, and Miguel Costa.

“What is being asked with this petition is very simple: the protection of the most precious and sensitive thing we have in our organism: the brain,” indicates Novamente, which hopes that more signatories “will join the cause.

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