NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Intended and Unintended Effects of Youth Bicycle Helmet Laws

Christopher S. Carpenter, Mark F. Stehr

NBER Working Paper No. 15658
Issued in January 2010
NBER Program(s):Children, Health Economics, Law and Economics

Over 20 states have adopted laws requiring youths to wear a helmet when riding a bicycle. We confirm previous research indicating that these laws reduced fatalities and increased helmet use, but we also show that the laws significantly reduced youth bicycling. We find this result in standard two-way fixed effects models of parental reports of youth bicycling, as well as in triple difference models of self-reported bicycling among high school youths that explicitly account for bicycling by youths just above the helmet law age threshold. Our results highlight important intended and unintended consequences of a well-intentioned public policy.

download in pdf format
   (227 K)

email paper

The NBER Bulletin on Aging and Health provides summaries of publications like this.  You can sign up to receive the NBER Bulletin on Aging and Health by email.

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w15658

Published: “Intended and Unintended Consequences of Youth Bicy cle Helmet Laws” Christopher Carpenter and Mark Stehr, Journal of Law and Economics (2011) 54(2): 305-324.

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded* these:
Chatterji and Markowitz w18773 Effects of Bicycle Helmet Laws on Children's Injuries
Kelly w12929 Cycling: An Increasingly Untouched Source of Physical and Mental Health
Reinhart and Rogoff w15639 Growth in a Time of Debt
Royer, Stehr, and Sydnor w18580 Incentives, Commitments and Habit Formation in Exercise: Evidence from a Field Experiment with Workers at a Fortune-500 Company
Becker Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
NBER Videos
Themes
Data
People
About

National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us