If your children bicycle in Ward 4 of Mentor, Ohio, this post is just for you. Your heart would stop if you had seen your children riding their bike the way I have. Don’t stop reading if you live elsewhere. Your children may be at risk too. Time for a safety talk.
This is what I have seen your children doing. Frequently.
- SHOOTING out of your driveway into the roadway because you live on a “quiet” street. There are many barriers for drivers they may not think about such as other cars, trees, bushes. Or distracted drivers, like the neighbor girl texting while she drives.
- RIDING AGAINST TRAFFIC. That is where you walk. On a bike, you ride in the same direction as cars.
- DARING cars by riding more than 2 side-by-side, or preventing a car from safely passing by riding in the middle of the street
- FLYING through stop signs and across intersections without looking.
- NO HELMET. Want me to bore you with the story of how a bike helmet saved my husband’s life? I’m going to tell you anyway. He was flying down the hill on Hendricks Road. When he put the pedal down on the uphill side the chain caught, throwing him off his bike into, then under, the guard rail. His ear was split but not his head. Need a better reason?
I am a cyclist just like your kids. It is a form of freedom that can’t be beat, your child’s first vehicle. You owe it to your children to teach them the rules of the road, bicycle version.
Bike Lake County is sponsoring Bike Day activities during the months of May and June in several Lake County communities. Mentor’s is coming up on May 19. This is a FREE event at the Civic Center with a bike rodeo, bike inspection and registration and safety info. The BMX Dialed Action Sports Team will have two shows, there will be a DJ AND a bike raffle. This will be a fun way to teach your child bicycle safety and get their bike checked over by an expert.
AND the brochure says you can get a tattoo! You don’t want to miss that. Click here for full info: Mentor Bike Day Lake County.
The City of Mentor also has prepared a handy brochure about the Bikeway System that includes the Rules of the Road for Cyclists. You can download it here. Before you let your child out of the house again, pound it into their head. It just might save their life. I know it will prevent MY heart attack when your child does not shoot out of your driveway in front of me!
We are so lucky that we live in a bicycle friendly city with miles of bike paths and bike lanes. Let’s all get out there and ride safely!
If you don’t live in our city, check with your police or sheriff for your local ordinances or click on Six Rules of the Road by the League of American Bicyclists for bicycle safety tips.