Bike, scooter safety top priority

By Jessica Dempsey

June 7, 2018 9:36 AM

Students at Winston Churchill School got first-hand education on bike and scooter safety, as students were even taught about hand signals from RCMP officers. JESSICA DEMPSEY LLS PHOTO

Bikes and scooters were hot items at Winston Churchill School, as students took part in a rolling rodeo.
The school welcomed multiple special guests to talk about different aspects of safety to the students
Kaitlyn Koch from the Acquired Brain Injury Outreach Team in Saskatoon spoke about helmets and safety, Const. Michael Hagel with the RCMP spoke to safety and signals, and Jim Taylor from Grindin Gears Bikes and Boards spoke about bike checks.
Koch noted it was Safe Kids Week across Canada, and the focus this year was concussions at home, on the road and at play, which was perfect for the rodeo.
“I’m here to focus on helmet safety. To make sure the kids have the right helmet for them, and that it’s on properly,” said Koch.
Having this rolling rodeo, Koch said was important because not everyone knew about the different aspects of bike safety.
“We bring people together that are experienced in that area, we can get kids comfortable with wearing helmets and get them more excited about them,” she explained.
As part of Koch’s display, she had a Jello brain and eggs for students to drop to showcase the importance of wearing a helmet.
“Research does show that wearing a properly fitted bike helmet every time reduces your chance of a brain injury by 88 per cent. It’s a huge decrease and means we will have kids safer for longer,” she said. 
Hagel showed the students different hand signals when riding their bikes or scooters.
“Bike safety is very important,” he said.
“Especially for children this age. It’s dangerous on the roads.”
Showing students various hand signals for stopping and turning was vital.
“It’s important because vehicles, when they are driving, they are looking for stop lights, with hand signals it gives them something to look at … it gives the driver of the vehicle something to look at so he knows what the kid is going to do,” he said.
Grade 3 student Summer Scott said some of the important things she learned were to always look both ways and to use hand signals.
“If you don’t wear a helmet your head will have an injury,” she said, stressing the importance of staying safe while riding her bike.
Hagel mentioned since the city is dual province, only the Alberta side has legislation where if you are under 16 you have to wear a helmet, while on the Saskatchewan side it is not required. However, he stresses children need to wear helmets for their own safety.

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