Bike Safety for Parents and Caregivers

Did you know…

  • 677 bicyclists were killed and 38,000 bicyclists were injured nationwide in 2011?
  • Children account for almost 60% of all cyclist injuries?
  • More children ages 5 to 14 are seen in emergency rooms for injuries related to biking than any other sport?

Use these tips to ensure that you and the children in your care are safe while riding a bike:

  • Helmets save lives. A helmet should be comfortable and snug, but not too tight. It should sit centered on top of the head in a level position, and it should not rock forward and backward or side to side. The helmet straps must always be buckled snugly against the chins. Review the Consumer Product Safety Commission Helmet Fit Guide for more information.
  • Make sure the bike's reflectors are secure, the brakes work properly, gears shift smoothly and tires are tightly secured and properly inflated.
  • Model safe biking behavior:
    • Ride on the right side of the road, with traffic, not against. Stay as far to the right as possible.
    • Use appropriate hand signals.
    • Respect traffic signals, stopping at all stop signs and stop lights.
    • Stop and look left, right and left again before entering a street or crossing an intersection. Look back and yield to traffic coming from behind before turning left.
  • Children should ride their bicycles on the sidewalk until they are 10-years-old.
  • Don't ride a bicycle when it's dark, in the fog or in other low-visibility conditions.
  • If riding at dusk, dawn or in the evening is unavoidable, use a light on your bike and make sure it has reflectors.
  • Wear clothing and accessories that incorporate retroreflective materials to improve your visibility to motorists.

Visit the following sites for more information and materials: