Bike Safety is Major Concern Among Health Professionals

Before your kids rush out the door, safety advocates are reminding parents to make sure their children are wearing a helmet.

Dr. Marcee White, medical adviser for Safe Kids Worldwide, said preventable injury is the number one killer of children, and many are hurt on bicycles, skateboards and scooters. Her group surveyed parents about why kids aren’t wearing helmets that can protect against serious head injuries and concussions.

As for the kids, they said they don’t wear helmets because their friends don’t, or that the helmet doesn’t fit correctly.

Harding Elementary in Mason City was among many Iowa schools holding Bike to School Day events this week.

Nationwide, White said, 50 children are rushed to the emergency room every hour because of preventable injury. Head injuries can be very serious and sometimes fatal, she said, but kids also can end up with broken bones and nasty cuts and bruises as well, so she encouraged parents to not only make youngsters wear a helmet, but to learn the rules of the road.

Between 2005 and 2015, White said, the number of emergency-room visits for bike- and skateboard-related injuries declined, but kids who were rushed to the hospital because of an accident on a scooter increased by about 40 percent. She said it’s disturbing that, of all these wheeled activities, parents are least likely to make children wear a helmet while riding a scooter.

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