Bicycle safety for kids: What you need to know

File photo
File photo

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Open Road Bicycles in Jacksonville has a mission: Keep kids safe while riding.  

"It's very important that mom and dad definitely know bike safety because then they can teach their kids exactly all the rules and things like that," said Holt Tucker, owner of Open Road Bicycles. "It's also very important that mom and dad wear the helmet because when kids see mom and dad, they understand that it's something we need to do."

Making sure your child has the right helmet is the first step when it comes to bike safety. 

Children 16 and younger are required by law to wear a helmet any time they're on a bicycle. 

Helmets need to be replaced after a child has gotten into a collision with one. They also need to be fitted properly and secured to ensure that they will protect the child's head in a fall or collision. 

"At the end of the day, you have one head and you want to make sure that you're safe and you're actually protected," said Tucker. 

Proper bike maintenance is important to keeping your child out of danger.

"Air, brakes and chain. The big thing is that you want to make sure you have proper tire pressure. If you don't have the right pressure, the ride will be more difficult and you're more prone to flats," Tucker said. "When we say brakes -- when you squeeze on them, they both stop your wheels moving and it stops properly. And then when we say, chain, we want to make sure this chain doesn't have a lot of slack to where it can fall off."

Knowing the rules of the road and stopping at every intersection and stop sign are major keys to staying safe on the road while biking. 

Lastly, your child needs to stay hydrated while riding. 

If you have questions about your child's helmet or bike, you can go to Open Road Bicycles where they'll make sure your child's helmet and bike are fitted properly.

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