Now that summer is here, plenty of children in Kansas are spending ample time riding bikes outdoors. While this is a fun and healthy activity, it also leaves your child vulnerable to accidents, which can sometimes be caused by careless drivers. There are tips you can provide your child to ensure that she is as safe as possible when riding a bike, as explained by KidsHealth.org.
Always wear a helmet
Helmets offer crucial protection in the event of a crash. Even if your child is just taking a trip a few blocks over, make sure he is wearing a suitable helmet. A helmet must fit comfortably, meaning it shouldn’t be too tight or too loose. It should also be discarded if it shows any signs of cracking or wear. A helmet with obvious defects is less likely to provide protection when a crash occurs.
Follow the rules of the road
Not all kids are permitted to ride on the street. Those who are should be fully aware of what’s expected of them when it comes to the rules of the road. When crossing an intersection, a child must obey traffic lights and signage like all other vehicles. Kids should also ride in the same direction as other vehicles, as riding against traffic is often more dangerous. When bike lanes are available, kids should stick to the marked out path, while also signally their maneuvers to motorists.
Ride an appropriate bike
The type of bike your child rides is also important. A bike that is too big or tall for a child will be more difficult to maneuver. Accordingly, never hand down an older kid’s bike to a younger one without taking it on a test drive first. If you’re not sure, a child should be able to plant both feet firmly on the ground when straddling the bike. Brakes and chains should also be well-maintained and operational to prevent mechanical issues from occurring.