Violence and Injury Prevention

Canadian road safety association awards web site of WHO Helmet Initiative

The Canadian Association of Road Safety Professionals (CARSP) selected the web site of the WHO Helmet Initiative as recipient of its monthly award for an international web site promoting road safety. The web sites are judged by CARSP's web team based on their overall design and usefulness in terms of providing timely and relevant information related to road safety. Created in 1991, the WHO Helmet Initiative promotes the use of motorcycle and bicycle helmets worldwide. It serves as a resource for those wishing to learn more about helmets and to develop strategies to advocate their use. The initiative seeks to address the safety of millions of people who use motorcycles and bicycles for transport and for recreation every day, a large number of whom are killed or permanently disabled as a result of a head injury. Many such injuries could be prevented or their severity reduced through the use of a simple and inexpensive helmet. In fact, the World report on road traffic injury prevention identified helmets as a very cost effective intervention. The WHO Helmet Initiative promotes universal helmet use by stimulating research and maintaining a reference library on helmet promotion and efficacy. Following World Health Day 2004, the WHO Helmet Initiative relaunched its web site and has taken steps to expand its reach by designating Cooperating Helmet Initiative Programmes, which are helmet-related centres of excellence from around the world. The web site features links to a literature database, news of helmet programmes from around the world, a quarterly newsletter entitled Headlines and links to other important web-based organizations and resources.