Posted on Monday, December 14th, 2015 at 10:35 pm
Are you giving your child a bicycle this holiday season? If so, you are not alone. Millions of bicycles will be purchased as gifts this holiday season for children in California and throughout the United States. Make a lesson about bicycle safety part of your gift.
Bicycling has increased in popularity in Sacramento as an excellent form of exercise, recreation, and low-cost transportation. We certainly have some of the most beautiful places to ride bicycles in California. Unfortunately, bicycles must share roads with motor vehicles and not all drivers are as observant and cautious as they should be when approaching a bicyclist. Therefore, riders must educate themselves regarding bicycle safety in order to reduce the risk of being involved in a serious bicycle accident.
Regardless of whether you are giving your child a new bicycle for the holidays, it is always wise to review bicycle safety with your children on a regular basis. According to the CDC, children between the ages of 5 and 14 and young adults between the ages of 14 and 24 account for over half of the bicycle-related injuries in emergency rooms. During 2013, 118 children under the age of 19 were killed in bicycle accidents and another 238,337 children were seen in emergency rooms for bicycle-related injuries. Reviewing bicycle safety should be one of the most important things you do this holiday season.
Bicycle Safety Tips for Children
As Sacramento bicycle accident attorneys, we understand the devastation caused by a bicycle accident. We encourage you to review these bicycle safety tips with your children and discuss bicycle safety with your children on a regular basis.
- Always Wear a Helmet – While three out of every four children in this country ride a bicycle each month, over half of those children do not always wear a helmet when riding. Never ride a bicycle without a helmet. Helmets reduce the risk of head injury by 45%. California’s bicycle helmet law requires all riders under 18 to wear a helmet. Make it a rule in your house. No Helmet – No Bike!
- Check Equipment – Before riding a bicycle, you need to make sure that your tires are properly inflated, your reflectors are not broken, and your brakes are working.
- Wear Bright Colors – Wearing bright colors helps drivers see you. A brightly colored jacket or vest should be worn for bicycle safety. Make it a rule — helmet AND vest!
- Do Not Ride at Night – Children should never ride after dark without an adult and, even then, it is much more dangerous than riding in daylight.
- Obey All Traffic Laws – Review California’s Bicycles Laws with your children to make sure they understand bicycle rules and they understand how to ride in traffic.
- Do Not Cover Your Ears – Never wear headphones or cover your ears. You need to be able to see AND hear everything around you. Bicycle safety begins with being alert.
- Look Before Turning – Before you turn, stop, look both ways, and look again before crossing.
- Check Local Laws About Riding on Sidewalks – For young children, riding on the sidewalk is usually safer than riding in the street; however, you must verify local bicycle laws regarding riding on sidewalks.
- Watch for Pedestrians – Sometimes children forget they are operating a “vehicle” when riding a bicycle. They must also watch for pedestrians and yield the right-of-way in crosswalks and in other situations.
The best way to teach your child about bicycle safety is to ride bicycles with your children. Remember, it is great exercise, a great way to spend time with your children, and the perfect way to teach bicycle safety by example. For more information on bicycle safety for children, visit NHTSA’s website or the SafeKids website.
Do You Need a Sacramento Bicycle Accident Attorney?
We hope that you and your children enjoy bicycling without being injured in an accident; however, we are here to help in the event you need us. Our bicycle accident lawyers understand California personal injury law regarding bicycles crashes.
Contact Tiemann Law Firm by calling our toll free number (916) 999-9000 or chat with a representative on our website.