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Bike Rodeo promotes safety


June 26th, 2018

Bike Rodeo promotes safety

Six-year-old Kelsey O’Neill learned to ride her bike without training wheels the day before the Bike Rodeo on Saturday, so she was excited to show off her newly-learned skills. First, Royal Newfoundland Constabulary Const. Ken Milks checked Kelsey’s helmet for proper fit. The Bike Rodeo is a fun annual event to promote bike safety.

Six-year-old Kelsey O’Neill learned to ride her bike without training wheels the day before the Bike Rodeo on Saturday, so she was excited to show off her newly-learned skills. First, Royal Newfoundland Constabulary Const. Ken Milks checked Kelsey’s helmet for proper fit. The Bike Rodeo is a fun annual event to promote bike safety. - Juanita Mercer

Dozens of young cyclists lined up at Roncalli Elementary Saturday to try out the cycling course and learn about bike safety in one of two similar events held over the weekend in St. John’s.

Windsor Lake MHA Cathy Bennett started organizing the annual Bike Rodeo events, which usually attract about 200 children, when she was elected several years ago.

Bennett said her youngest son was in a bike accident and that’s what inspired her to host the events.

“He’s fine — his helmet did the job it was supposed to do, but it was a real important lesson to me to make sure that we do what we can as parents, and sometimes we don’t always know exactly how the helmet’s supposed to fit, or exactly how the bike’s supposed to feel.”

 

Windsor Lake MHA Cathy Bennett explains the cycling course to young cyclists before they begin. Bennett organizes the annual Bike Rodeo to promote bike safety. -Juanita MercerWindsor Lake MHA Cathy Bennett explains the cycling course to young cyclists before they begin. Bennett organizes the annual Bike Rodeo to promote bike safety. -Juanita Mercer

Bennett said the event is an opportunity to educate people about all aspects of bike safety.

Royal Newfoundland Constabulary officers and Bicycle Newfoundland and Labrador representatives provided safety tips for parents and children.

“We want to make sure that they’ve put straps in on both sides of their ears, and that the chin strap is not any more than one finger tight,” said Const. Ken Milks as he checked a child’s helmet.

“A lot of the kids you see now the straps are hanging down, whether they think it’s cool or not or whatever, but it’s easy for their helmet to fall off,” he said. “Parents are saying it’s good that we do check their helmets because if they ever do wipe out on their bike it’s important that it fits properly.”

Milks said he’s noticed in driving around neighbourhoods that it seems these sorts of safety events have paid off because he always sees people wearing helmets.

“We’ve done a lot of safety since that came into law two years ago in Newfoundland and Labrador and it’s really paid off — parents are really more conscious now that kids have their helmets on, and parents also know they have to wear their helmets, too.”

Some of the safety tips offered at the event included checking to ensure helmets fit properly, and ensuring the bicycle is in good working order — especially checking the brakes.

“Sometimes we just take our bikes out and give them to our kids when the season starts and it’s a good idea to check those things first,” said parent Brenda Lush, who brought her daughter to the event.

 

Twitter: @juanitamercer_

Posted on June 26th, 2018