Children tend to ride their bicycles year round in South Carolina, weather permitting. Letting your kids enjoy time outdoors in the fresh air is a great way to allow them to get some exercise. Biking should not only be considered play. It is a great responsibility, and children need to follow safety rules to help ensure that a fun afternoon of riding doesn’t turn tragic.
According to statistics, accidents involving bicycles occur at fairly high rates. Just two years ago, more than 700 cyclists were killed in accidents involving bikes and cars. Another 48,000 people were injured. The majority of the accidents occurred in urban areas. Children aged 15 and younger accounted for 7 percent of the deaths and 11 percent of the injuries.
Here are tips to help keep your kids safe:
- Helmet: Make sure that your child not only wears a helmet but that it fits properly. Even young children riding with their parents should have a helmet on.
- Readiness: Just like a car, a bicycle should be made ready. Make sure tires are inflated, brakes are in working order and chains are oiled.
- Size: Don’t let your child ride a bike that is too large or too small. This can cause your child to be forced to ride in a way that is unsafe.
- Visibility: You want to be sure that vehicle drivers can see your child. Light and bright clothing is best, as are reflectors on bicycles.
- Two Hands: Kids love to perform stunts, and riding no-handed is one of the best. Two-handed riding is safest.
- Road Hazards: Teach your children what to look out for in the road. Oil spills, broken glass, puddles and potholes can all be dangerous.
- Night Riding: Don’t let your children ride their bikes after dark. No matter how many reflectors are on their bikes, chances are much higher that a vehicle’s driver will not notice your little one.
- Vehicles: Bicycles are typically considered vehicles and must obey the rules of the road. Teach your children what these are.
- Maturity: Any child can ride a bike, but not every child should be riding a bike without parental supervision. Make sure that your child is mature enough to follow the rules you have set forth even outside of your presence.
When you take the time to teach your children about safe riding habits, they are more likely to enjoy their time on their bicycles without injury. Bike riding is fun but is also dangerous if certain situations present themselves.
If your child is injured in a bike accident in South Carolina, call our personal injury team. We will review the details of your case and advise you whether or not you are due compensation under the law. Call now.