Every child who rides a bicycle to school or anywhere else, must wear a bicycle helmet. That is the single most important piece of advice that any California bicycle accident lawyer would offer parents.
Unfortunately, bicycle helmet usage rates, which should be 100% among children, are not always so. Many children resist wearing a helmet for a variety of reasons, and parents simply go along. Children don’t like helmets because they consider them uncomfortable or uncool. Parents need to be stricter about getting their children to wear bicycle helmets every time they ride.
Not wearing a bicycle helmet increases the risk of brain injury if the child is involved in an accident. The risk of brain injuries is present when an adult bicyclist is involved in an accident, but the risk of severe injuries may be greater when it is a child involved in a crash. That’s because young brains are still growing, and may be much more vulnerable to the damaging effects of a sudden blow to the head, which often results in a bicycle accident. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, children account for some of the highest rates of injuries in bicycle accidents. They account for close to 60% of all injuries in bicycle accidents.
Introduce your child to helmets early. A young child, who has begun wearing helmets, is likely to develop a habit of wearing helmets, and will continue wearing bicycle helmets as he grows older.
Get your children to help pick out a helmet. The helmet must be properly fitting. Let your child pick the color or design that he or she wants to.
It also goes without saying that you as an adult should model appropriate behaviors, and wear a bicycle helmet while riding.