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Bike Safety for Pre-Teens
By now, your kids should know all the basics of bike safety, and hopefully they’ve earned the freedom to explore the neighborhood with their friends and family. It’s still important to reinforce a few tips to keep them safe.
Top Safety Tips
- We have a simple saying: “Use your head, wear a helmet.” It is the single most effective safety device available to reduce head injury and death from bicycle crashes.
- Make sure your child has the right size helmet and wears it every time when riding, skating or scooting. Click here for instruction on how to properly fit your child’s helmet.
- You’d be surprised how much kids learn from watching you, so it’s extra important for parents to model proper behavior. Wear a helmet, even if you didn’t when you were a kid.
- Your children’s helmet should meet the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s standards. When it’s time to purchase a new helmet, let your children pick out their own; they’ll be more likely to wear it for every ride.
- Ensure proper bike fit by bringing the child along when shopping for a bike. Select one that is the right size for the child, not one he or she will grow into.
- Before the ride, make sure the reflectors are secure, brakes work properly, gears shift smoothly, and tires are tightly secured and properly inflated.
- Teach your kids to make eye contact with drivers. Bikers should make sure drivers are paying attention and are going to stop before they cross the street.
- Tell your kids to ride on the right side of the road, with traffic, not against it. Stay as far to the right as possible. Use appropriate hand signals and respect traffic signals, stopping at all stop signs and stoplights.
- When riding at dusk, at dawn or in the evening, be bright and use lights – and make sure your bike has reflectors as well. It’s also smart to wear clothes and accessories that have retro-reflective materials to improve biker visibility to motorists.