Town Square

Kids and Bicycle Safety

Original post made by C Gage, Del Prado, on Mar 22, 2008

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Posted by ES
a resident of Country Fair
on Mar 22, 2008 at 6:22 pm

when i first let my middle schoolers ride bikes to school I followed them and spied on them one day, then got them in trouble after school for not being as careful as they were supposed to be. No bikes for a month.

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Posted by Amy
a resident of Country Fair
on Mar 22, 2008 at 11:40 pm

I see parents driving their kids to and from school everyday, and everyday I see them go through red lights. I see them talking on the phone, oblivious to children in crosswalks. I see them drive toward children in crosswalks, instead of stopping. I would never let my children walk or ride their bikes to school in Pleasanton because of the narcissistic parent drivers I see on the road every school day.

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Posted by Jerry
a resident of Oak Hill
on Mar 23, 2008 at 12:51 am

When approaching kids using the bike lane in the direction of my travel, if possible, I move over a lane. Most of the time these kids have recently been released from school and their mind is on anything but watching for vehicles approaching from behind. They sometimes veer out of the bike lane while having fun with their friends.

Just remember when we adults were kids and where our thoughts were after school. Be an alert defensive driver, especially around schools.

I agree with Amy, some of the most dangerous drivers around schools are parents transporting children while their thoughts are elsewhere.


Good for you. Thank you for being a responsible parent.

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Posted by C Gage
a resident of Del Prado
on Mar 23, 2008 at 2:54 pm

Good points, Amy and Jerry. My kids ride bikes to school sometimes - but only with me, door to door with close supervision of the way they're riding - I told my son the story about S.R. boy to get him to stop asking, "When can I ride to school by myself?" Some other kids from his school do, at age 10. I'm just not ready yet. I hate usuing stories like this as examples. Then we learned that the little boy from San Ramon who died was in the same class as the daughter of a good friend of ours. Tragic. No other way to put it.

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Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Mar 23, 2008 at 4:03 pm

I never carry a cell phone in the car. All riders are quiet or they can take a taxi at their own expense. Children know how to pressure parents to get their way;accompany you kids door to door, no bicycles. I don't think that most children can rely upon adults to drive carefully. I don't. Nothing in the world will ever bring back that 5th grade child. Tragic.

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Posted by PToWN94566
a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Mar 23, 2008 at 9:10 pm

I think it's important for parents to discuss bicycle safety with their children- making sure that they pay attnetion when crossing streets, helmets etc. I live in an area where children cut through the side street- it's a scary place to drive around 3pm. I've seen MANY without helmets or they do the thing where someone sits on the handle bars. Also, the intersection of Greenwood and Valley is scary-I've seen many students, walking or on bikes, dart out in the middle of traffic and stand on the medium. Cars turning could possibly not see these darting kids as a smaller car often can't see infront of larger ones. Anyway I think it goes both ways that drivers and pedestrains need to be safe and really pay attention during school hours.

On a side note, I remember getting pulled over on my bike about 15 years ago for not riding on the correct side of the street. I wish police officers would patrol school zones more often when school is let out. That way they can pull over the people in speeding cars, rolling through stop signs etc, as well as stop kids on bikes that aren't wearing helmets or who dart across the street. A simple citation is worth it compared to being injured or possibled killed.

And doesn't a cell phone law start up this summer? It'll be interesting in the fall to see if parents continue to chat on their phones. I've seen many parents in larger sized cars, small ones too,(and no not everyone does this) talk on their phones with a couple kids in the car. Dangerous!

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Posted by Parent of a bike rider
a resident of Birdland
on Mar 28, 2008 at 1:01 pm

Take a look a this public service announcement from the UK which illustrates very well that we need to increase our awareness of bicyclists when we are behind the wheel of a car: