READING - Keeping Kids Safe on Wheels

Safe Kids LogoFrom the executive summary:

Safe Kids Worldwide undertook an in-depth analysis of current patterns of injury and parents’ beliefs and behaviors related to keeping children safe during four wheeled sports: bicycling, scootering, skating and skateboarding.

We found that:

  • While helmet use has increased over the past few decades, nearly 4 in 10 parents of children ages 5-14 years say their child still does not always wear a helmet while riding;
  • Younger children were reported as being more likely to wear their helmet than older children, at 67 percent of 5-9 year olds and 61 percent of 10-14 year olds;
  • Helmets were reported as the piece of safety equipment most likely to be worn by all children; and
  • Parent helmet use was strongly associated with increased helmet use by children while bicycling – among parents who say they always wear a helmet while riding a bike, 86 percent say their children do the same, but among parents who say they never wear a helmet, only 38 percent report that their children always wear one themselves

These results suggest a need to ensure parents understand the very real risk of injury during wheeled sports and the mediating effect that protective gear can have. The survey findings suggest that some parents may be underestimating the risk because they view their child as an experienced rider or believe that the area where their child participates in the activity is not dangerous.

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