All homeowners associations want children to be safe while riding their bikes and scooters in their community. Parents cannot always be there to watch them all the time, but it is their responsibility to teach their kids the rules, and it's the HOA board’s responsibility to make sure the parents are informed of the rules. Here are four steps that the HOA board can send to members to increase children's bike safety when a parent/guardian is not around
1. Teach kids how to fall
Learning how to ride correctly is only part of what keeps a child safe. Falls are inevitable, and teaching children to fall correctly will prevent many serious injuries. Teach them to roll on impact, relax their body, and try to land on their padded and fleshiest parts.
2. Check equipment
Check bikes and scooters for cracks or dents, sharp metal parts, jutting edges, deflated tires, and slippery surfaces. Replace defective equipment, consult a professional for repairs and apply self-adhesive, non-slip material to slippery surfaces.
3. Require protective equipment
Scooters, rollerblades, bikes, and similar equipment cause thousands of injuries—and even some deaths—every year. Make sure children in your homeowner's association are wearing helmets, knee pads, and elbow pads, especially if they are just learning. A helmet is crucial, not only does it save lives it’s also a law in most communities. Encourage parents to buy a helmet that a child thinks is cool and safe—it’s worth the extra money if the child is more likely to wear it.
4. Check the paths and roads that children will be using when biking or skating outdoors
Being proactive to check for trip hazards and uneven pavement will protect the homeowners association and the child from potential liability costs if an accident occurs.
The bottom line is safety. Accidents can occur at any time, and the association should be doing its part to keep residents safe. You can start by handing out these tips or even holding a bike and scooter educational hour some evening. The homeowners association should be a safe and sound place for children to play.