On March 11, the Montgomery Advertiser indicated that a teenage skateboarder was speeding down a parking garage ramp when he lost control and went into oncoming traffic. Tragically, the fourteen-year-old lost his life in the accident.
Our Montgomery accident attorneys know that this tragic accident is not the only one that will involve a young person this spring. In fact, Alabama kids on bicycles, skateboards, scooters and rollerblades are all in potential danger of becoming involved in a fatal car accident or in a car wreck that causes serious injury. As the weather gets warmer and more kids head outside to ride their bikes or play, the chances of an accident increase significantly.
Bicycle Accidents are Dangerous to Alabama Kids
While skateboarding, scooter and rollerblade accidents are all more common over the summer, bicycle accidents are an especially serious risk for kids because so many children ride bikes. Kids also often ride bicycles for longer distances in order to get to the home of a friend or to other recreational activities since bikes provide an effective method of transportation.
Unfortunately, the statistics on bicycle accidents show that kids who ride their bicycles around in the spring and summer might not be having the carefree and safe good time that they and their parents were hoping for. The statistics from Bicycling Info.org reveal that 618 people were killed and 52,000 were injured in bicycle crashes in 2010, with 20 percent of those who suffered injuries ages 16 and under.
Bicycle accidents can be dangerous and lead to a high number of deaths for a lot of reasons. One major issue is that many kids ride in higher-traffic areas or in areas without sidewalks. Some children do not know the rules of safe biking and others refrain from wearing helmets even though they are supposed to. Parents may also have more difficulty supervising their kids when kids are off from school and riding bikes, especially as more parents need to work longer hours due to a tough economy.
Talking to Kids About Bike Safety
While it can be difficult to supervise your children all the time when they are biking, parents need to make sure they are making age-appropriate rules for when, where and how a child can ride a bike. For example, kids who are very young should ride only in the driveway or family yard under supervision. Kids who are older may be allowed to ride their bike to the home of a friend in the neighborhood. However, parents need to make sure they set and enforce limits to keep kids from riding in heavy traffic areas where they are more likely to get hurt.
Children's of Alabama also offers some additional tips on bike safety that parents should share with their children including:
- The importance of wearing bright visible clothes when riding a bike so drivers can see you easily.
- The dangers of night bicycling.
- The importance of being aware of the traffic and riding with traffic in a single-file path.
By educating kids on bike safety and by supervising and setting guidelines, you can hopefully help to keep your children safe. If a driver is involved in an accident that causes your child to be hurt, you may have a right to obtain legal compensation.