Got Wheels? Get a Helmet! Fitting your helmet Activities with wheels are fun and are good ways to get exercise. But it’s important to stay safe so that kids can keep active. Head injuries are the #1 cause of serious injury and death to kids on wheels. A helmet could save your child’s life! 1 Get the right kind of helmet. • Choose a bicycle helmet for bike riding, in-line skating, and scooter riding. Skateboard riders need a special skateboarding helmet which covers more of the back of the head. • Make sure the helmet has a sticker to say that it meets safety standards such as CSA, CPSC, Snell or ASTM. • Try the helmet on your child’s head before you buy it. Choose a helmet that is comfortable and not too big. Correct • Replace a helmet when it is past 5 years old.The plastics dry out and the helmet becomes unsafe to use. 2 Make sure the helmet fits your child’s head. • Have your child put on the helmet. • Helmets are sold with foam pads to help the helmet fit better.The pads attach to the inside of the helmet.Try different pads until the helmet fits firmly on your child’s head. • The helmet should cover the top of the forehead and should rest about 2 fingers’ width above the eyebrows. • Adjust the side straps so that they fit snugly around your child’s ears in a “V” shape.The buckles on the side strap should fit right under the ear. • Buckle the chin strap.Tighten it until you can only fit one finger between the strap and your child’s chin. • Remember to take off anything that could change the way a helmet fits. These things include baseball caps, big hair clips, and headphones. 3 Check that the helmet fits correctly. • Have your child shake her head from side to side and from front to back. The helmet should not move around when she shakes her head. • Make sure the helmet is level on your child’s head. Look at the picture to the left.The fit of your child’s helmet should match the picture with the word “correct” on it. • Teach your child to check the helmet fit every time. 1-888-SAFE-TIPS (723-3847) www.safekidscanada.ca Got Wheels? Get a Helmet! What kids on wheels need to keep safe: Bicycle • Your child is wearing a bike helmet. • The bike is not too big. A bike that is too big can be dangerous. Have your child sit on the bike seat. Adjust the seat until at least his toes touch the ground on both sides. • The bike’s brakes are working, the tires have air, and the chain is in place. • The bike has a bell or horn and reflectors. Scooter • Your child is wearing a helmet, elbow pads, and knee pads. Why children get hurt Children are most likely to be badly hurt when: • The scooter handlebars are the right height.Your child should be able to hold the handlebars without leaning forward. In-line skates • They ride or skate near cars and traffic • Your child is wearing a helmet, wrist pads, elbow pads, and knee pads. • They do not use safety gear • The skate size is the same as your child’s shoe size. Skates that are too big are not safe. • They are beginners and just learning how to ride or skate • They go too fast or try stunts When is your child ready to ride a bike on the road? Skateboard • Your child is wearing a helmet, wrist pads, elbow pads, and knee pads. • If your child is just learning to ride a skateboard, choose a small board with small wheels. Set family rules Children under 10 should not ride • Keep your child away from cars and traffic. their bicycles in traffic. They do not • Never ride or skate without safety equipment. have the physical and thinking skills Remember: parents are role models for their children. Wear a helmet to show your child the safe way to ride. to handle their bikes safely in traffic. They cannot understand what Can your child ride or skate safely? car drivers expect from bicycle riders. Watch your child while he rides and skates.Your child should be able to: • Keep his balance Children over 10 need a lot of • Control his speed training before they can ride on the • Ride or skate in a straight line road. They need to practice their • Turn without losing control or falling skills in safe places while adults are • Stop without losing control or falling watching and helping them. • Notice other people or things, and avoid running into them • Check over his shoulder without losing control Going to the playground? • Take off your child’s helmet before he plays on equipment. It could get caught on equipment and cause your child to be strangled. For more information, visit www.safekidscanada.ca or call 1-888-SAFE-TIPS (723-3847).
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