Bike & Pedestrian Safety
As the training wheels come off a child’s bike, the risk for bike and wheeled-related injury may increase. To stay safe on two, three and four wheeled toys and vehicles, big kids need to learn the rules of the road and practice safe behaviors.
A single rule – wear a helmet – can reduce the risk of head injury by as much as 85 percent.
Other ways to keep a big kid safe when riding a bike are:
- Make sure your child has the right size helmet and that he wears it every time when riding.
- Inspect bicycles, to ensure that reflectors are secure, the brakes work properly, gears shift smoothly and tires are tightly secured and properly inflated.
- Actively supervise children.
- Practice bike safety: learn the rules of the road, wear reflective clothes and stickers, and ride on sidewalks when possible.
In the United States, pedestrian injury is the second leading cause of injury-related death for children ages 5 to 14. In 2007, nearly 27,440 children were treated in emergency rooms for pedestrian-related injuries.
Safe Routes to Schools
Safe Kids Pima County was awarded $38,200 in federal Safe Routes to School funds to set up pedestrian and bicycle safety education and encouragement programs at seven schools in the Tucson area.
The Safe Routes to School program is modeled after other successful programs in the country, including a nationally recognized program in Marin County, California.
Within the schools, second grade students learn about pedestrian safety and fourth grade students learn about bicycle safety. In addition to educating children, the program engages parents, teachers, school staffers, transportation officials, law-enforcement officers and school district officials to identify the travel habits of students and develop safe routes for students to use while walking or bicycling to school.
Furthermore, as part of the proram, needed facility improvements, such as the addition of bicycle racks or sidewalk ramps, are currently being identified. Training programs are being implemented for teachers and school staffers, along with enhanced police enforcement measures. And lastly, educational material reinforces the message of pedestrian and bicycle safety.
International Walk to School Day
Every October, Safe Kids Pima County in partnership with area schools and local Fed-Ex offices, participates in International Walk to School Day. The day engages kids of all abilities, enhances the health of kids, improves the environment and helps raise awareness about creating safe routes to schools. In the spring, Safe Kids Pima County repeats the event with an additional focus on safe biking - Walk and Roll to School Day.