Bike safety training in Menlo Park teaches middle school kids how to navigate city streets

by Laurie Sobel on October 8, 2018

Last weekend 12 lucky students participated in a bike safety training provided by Wheel Kids. The event was organized by Parents for Safe Routes, and the La Entrada Safe Routes to Schools Taskforce.

The training started at La Entrada Middle School. After Wheel Kids trainers presented examples of traffic situations and correct bicycle riding, the trainers and the students practiced these skills out on the road. They road to Menlo Atherton Highs School and then to Burgess park and back to La Entrada Middle School. Many of the students who participated plan to bike to high school and will use the skills they learned at the training.

Parents for Safe Routes hopes to organize this training a few times a year for students to participate.

Some of the safety skills Wheel Kids trainers emphasized are:

  • Be prepared. Make sure your bike is in proper working order. Wear (on your head – not on your handlebars) a properly fitted helmet. Bring water.
  • Be visible. Wear bright clothes and use reflective gear. Always use lights at night, and start a habit of using them during the day.
  • Be predictable. Do not weave in and out of parked cars or make sudden movements that others won’t expect. Stay in bike lanes (when available).
  • Be aware. Obstacles such as cars, pedestrians, other bikes, trash cans, animals, sticks, etc., can appear at any time. Always be looking around and be alert to the conditions on the road. Do not text or look at your phone while you are biking.
  • Be a rule follower. Treat riding a bike like riding a car. Ride in the direction with traffic (like a car). Stop at all stop signs (like a car). Do what you know is right, regardless of the behaviors you see others exhibiting on the road.

Photos by Robb Most (c) 2018

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