Bicycling is a great way for both children and adults to get exercise. However, for the millions of Americans who ride bicycles, less than half wear bicycle helmets. According to a study conducted by the Center for Injury Research and Policy of the Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, found that from “January 2006 through December 2015, more than 2.2 million children age 5-17 years were treated in US hospital emergency departments for bicycle-related injuries. This averages 608 cases per day or 25 every hour.”
It is important that everyone is practicing proper bike safety practices so they can make it home safely. A few bike safety tips for kids:
- Always wear a helmet
- Have a bright headlight and horn or bell (bike should be equipped with reflectors)
- Wear bright color clothes to ensure visibility to drivers
- Ride during the day
- Follow the rules of the road and stop at all street corners
- Ride with both handles on the bike handle bars
- To near traffic, avoid wearing headphones
- Use hand signals at intersections
- Always have a bike buddy
- Ensure the helmet is appropriate for the size and/or age of your child. It should be level on top of the head and about two finger-widths above the eyebrows.
- The strap should be buckled and snug under the chin. Children should not wear loose-fitting helmets.
- Make sure there is a CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission) sticker on the helmet. CPSC standard for safety meets the standard for safety.
- Don’t use a helmet that has been in a crash.
Nationwide Children’s Hospital. (2018, June). Bike Injuries Study. Retrieved from https://www.nationwidechildrens.org/newsroom/news-releases/2018/06/bike-injuries-study
Saint Luke’s Health System. (n.d.). Teaching Children Bicycle Safety. Retrieved from https://www.saintlukeskc.org/health-library/teaching-children-bicycle-safety
Safe Kids Nebraska. (n.d.). Bicycle Safety. Retrieved from https://www.safenebraska.org/safe-home-play/bicycle-safety