Over the past week the Wisconsin State Journal has run stories like: Motorcyclist dies from injuries, Three injured in rollover, and Crash that snarled interstate traffic. There is no doubt that spring brings out the worst in drivers. Suddenly the sunshine, an eagerness to arrive, and just feeling our oats gets us in trouble on the roads. This spring fever is even more frightening when we think of sending our children out on the roads on everything from cars, to bikes, to scooters.
That's what makes spring the perfect time to review road safety.
With driving teens, spring is a good time to review the rules of the road. To remind your teen that the car is not for hosting a dance party, texting, talking on the phone or drag racing. A number of websites have information for creating or review a driving contract with your teen. Liberty Mutual has spaces so that you can insert a consequence if your teen is caught breaking the contract. Other sites include: Allstate, Teen Driving, and Webber and Grinnell. If your driver is parking downtown, make sure she follows the Madison Dooring Ordinance requiring drivers to check for cyclist before opening car doors.
School age children:
While not yet behind the wheel, school age children feel the same spring desires to get out and get a little freedom on their bikes, skateboards, or scooters. Once they feel comfortable on wheels, the challenge is to test the limits and parents need to insure their children take risks in a safe manner. First, make sure your child has appropriate safety gear. A properly fit helmet, elbow and knee pads (This site assures users: "Hey, my mom didn't let me skate without pads until I was 34"), and a properly tuned up vehicle.
If your child, or even mom and dad, decide to save some gas money, lose a few pounds and commute via bike, check out REI's upcoming Bike Commuting Basics class to help keep you safe on the road.
'Tis the season, to get out and get active. Taking a few minutes to review the basics can make this season a safe one.