Bicycle safety needed for children, parents

Published 12:00 am Thursday, April 29, 2004

Bicycle safety will be the hot topic this Saturday at Clark Elementary School from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Thanks to Liberty Mutual of Omaha and the Selma alumnae chapter of Delta Sigma Theta there will be a free bicycle safety fair where children will learn about proper ways to ride their bike and test their know-how on a riding course.

Statistics say that nearly 700 bicyclists die each year in accidents and sadly 90 percent of those involved in the accidents do not wear helmets.

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As most are aware one of the biggest and first accomplishments parents cherish are those that involve their children learning how to ride a bicycle.

As is the case with anything else, we should make sure that children learn how to safely ride before the wheels begin turning on the pavement.

Evidently other communities agree with this thinking due to the fact that Liberty Mutual holds these sorts of events all across the country.

Your child may not think a helmet is &uot;cool,&uot; but a helmet can save your child from a serious injury in a fall or collision. If you ride, always wear your helmet. Set the example! Encourage other parents to also wear a helmet and have their children wear helmets.

If you are a parent and your child is exploring the road or near the age of exploration then we suggest you take the time this Saturday and attend the fair at Clark Elementary. Your child should stay on sidewalks, paths and driveways until he can show that he rides well and follows the basic rules of the road.

If you cannot attend the fair, then we offer you the basic rules of the road, which are:

STOP before riding out into traffic from a driveway, sidewalk, alley or parking lot.

LOOK left, right and left again.

ENTER the roadway when there is no traffic.

RIDE on the right side of the road with the traffic.

OBEY stop signs and red lights. (Children under 12 should walk, not ride, their bikes through busy intersections.)

LOOK BACK and YIELD to traffic coming from behind you before turning left at intersections.