It is slowly starting to warm up. My children are eager to start playing outside and now that we are in daylight saving time, there is more daylight to do that. Channel 4 recently did a report on child bike safety that I thought was very helpful and wanted to share…
Channel 4 reports that it is time to make sure your child’s bike is road-ready as we move into springtime. Cleveland Clinic Children’s Pediatrician Dr. Mike Macknin says your safety check should start with a look at the bike’s height. “Parents may have gotten a bike for Christmas that they want their child to grow into. You might want to think about that before you put a child on a bike where they can barely reach the pedals and have trouble stopping,” explained Macknin. The bike’s frame should not be bent and the seat and handlebars need to be adjusted to the proper height. You should also make sure the bike has reflectors on both the front and the back. A chain guard to keep your child’s pants from getting caught is a good idea too. You also want to make sure their wheels don’t wobble and that the tires are filled with enough air. Macknin says that once you have the bike in tip-top shape, your child will need a good fitting helmet, too. “You can tell it fits when it fits snugly and they can move their head around and it doesn’t bounce around, even without the strap,” he said. (For more information regarding [proper fit for a bicycle helmet see the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration publication œEasy Steps to Properly Fit a Bicycle Helmet. ) Macknin says to look for a sticker from the Consumer Product Safety Commission stating your child’s helmet meets all federal safety standards. See below for additional safety tips from NHTSA.
Many bicycle-related crashes resulting in injury or death are associated with the bicyclist’s behavior, including such things as not wearing a bicycle helmet, riding into a street without stopping, turning left or swerving into traffic that is coming from behind, running a stop sign, and riding the wrong way in traffic. To maximize your safety, always wear a helmet AND follow the rules of the road.
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