This month the famed Tour de France will begin. The 2,200-mile bike race takes place mostly in France over a three week period. So while those guys are whipping through the mountain chains of the Pyrenees and the Alps, and eventually down the Champs-Élysées at ridiculous speeds, we’ve got bicyclists of every age on our very own streets and sidewalks. Skateboarders and scooters, too are an increasingly common site. And we want all to stay safe!
Many cities, like Laguna Beach, host bike safety expos to help stem the number of bike-related injuries. But as a PMC, you can take proactive steps to help your bikers and riders stay safe in your community.
Host a fun bike safety event that includes games, simple obstacle courses, a biking scavenger hunt, a parade of bikes, and of course treats to entice more attendees. Ask representatives from the local police department to come and talk to children about bike rules of the road, the importance of bike lights and reflective gear. Invite local bike shop owners to help properly fit kids and adults for helmets and other equipment. Check with local BMX groups and invite them to perform a bike demo!
Make sure you have a readily available supply of extra bike lights to hand out to riders. Every time you spot a child or adult following bike safety rules, reward them with a new bike light.
Send out frequent notices through your website bulletins and newsletters and remind drivers to slow down and keep a watchful eye out for kids and adults on bikes. And remind bikers to always wear a helmet. (Here’s one fun fact you can share: Wearing a bike helmet can reduce your risk of head injury by 85%, according to David Spain, chief of trauma and critical care surgery at Stanford University Medical Center.)
Monitor your local bicycle coalitions to stay updated on changes to bike lanes, bicycle-related legislation, and improvements to help make biking safer. And share this news with your residents.
Upgrade your bike racks or at the very least, keep them in good shape. Be sure and keep bike paths and bike storage areas well lit and clean.
Encourage frequent bike repairs by reminding folks to keep tires pumped to proper specifications and make any necessary minor repairs. Consider hosting a quarterly bike repair clinic.
Share information and news about local bike rodeos and races.
The feeling of freedom that can only come from riding a bike is pretty special. Making your community more bike-friendly will benefit everyone.
Download our whitepaper today for more ideas on how you can build a safe, informed, and efficient community!