Bike Safety — The Bump
School-Aged Children

Bike Safety

In the area where you live, do most children wear bicycle helmets when they ride their bikes?  What are the streets/traffic like in your area?  Does your state/county/town have helmet laws for kids?

Where I live (Maryland) we have a helmet law for kids 16 and under, but I rarely see kids wearing helmets when we ride in the neighborhood closest to us.  I've never known anyone to get a ticket or a fine for allowing their kid to ride without a helmet.  My H and I happen to live on a rural 2-lane road, so our kids cannot just go outside, grab their bikes, and pedal off to a neighbor's house.  When we ride, we are going for a longer ride as a family activity, and we're likely to be on bike trails or busier roads.  Because biking is a whole-family activity for us, not just something the kids do on a quiet cul-de-sac, we always wear helmets.  If we lived in a neighborhood, I might not tell the kids to put helmets on every time.
High School English teacher and mom of 2 kids:

DD, born 9/06/00 -- 12th grade
DS, born 8/25/04 -- 7th grade

Re: Bike Safety

  • It's about 50/50 in my neighborhood.  DS always wears a helmet.  We live on a somewhat busy, urban street, so we only let him ride when we are right with him.  We also ride as a family on bike paths, and we all wear our helmets.  I looked up the law:

    TN Child Bicycle Safety Act requires that:
    • All bicycle operators under 16 years of age must wear a bicycle helmet on any highway, street, or sidewalk
    • All child passengers under 40 pounds or 40 inches must be seated and secured in a child restraining seat or a bicycle trailer




    DS born 8/8/09 and DD born 6/12/12.
  • Ours mostly all wear helmets, though the older kids probably don't sometimes and probably not on their scooters moreso than their bikes, I don't generally take note of their helmet use... We have some neighbors who rollerblade and wear helmets for that too.
    One thing that has surprised me a few times is seeing kids riding in bike trailers w/ no helmet.
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  • Helmets are required for all ages in our city. And I'd say 99% of the kids I see wear them. Heck probably 90% of the adults I see wear them.
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