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By Breeana Greenberg
Doheny Bike Owner Jason Spates is celebrating Bike Safety Month by bringing attention to the importance of wearing a helmet.
In the hopes of getting kids in the habit of wearing a helmet, Doheny Bike will give them away to kindergartners and kids in grades between first and third grades throughout the month of May.
“We believe in helmet safety and feel that educating at an early age will teach bicycle safety and the importance of wearing a helmet while enjoying a bicycle, scooter or skate board,” Spates said in an email.
This is the third helmet giveaway that Doheny Bike has offered. Though the store only sells e-bikes and does not sell kids bikes, Spates felt that the helmet giveaways are a chance to give back to the community
Spates encourages families of K-3rd graders to stop at the store to pick up a helmet and receive help with the helmet fitting. The helmets are a size small, 51-54 cm.
In checking the fit, Spates explained that the helmet should sit about two finger widths above the child’s eyebrows and only one finger should fit between the chin and helmet strap.
The helmet should sit flush against the child’s head and the left and right-side straps should form a “V” and meet below the ear.
If the helmet is tilted too high or back, it won’t protect a child’s face or forehead, Spates said, but a helmet tilted too low or forward could obstruct a child’s view.
Helmets should always be replaced after it’s taken an impact, even if it’s just been dropped hard on the ground. Helmets should also be replaced every five years as sunlight and heat can cause them to wear out. Parents should also recheck the fit of the helmet and size up as needed as kids grow, Spates said.
In the same way it’s become a habit to put on your seatbelt when you get in a car, Spates hopes that kids will develop the habit of putting on their helmet when they get on their bike.
“Basically, it’s just to increase awareness of helmet safety, to make sure you have a helmet that fits correctly,” Spates said. “Being that we’re an e-bike company, they do travel at a very high speed, so giving helmets away to kids is a way to kind of start to educate them early on that helmet safety is extremely important, whether it’s a motorized bike, or a skateboard, or scooter, or balance bike, they should be wearing a helmet.”
Doheny Bike will provide helmets for the kids as supplies last, through the end of May.
Spates hopes to offer a back-to-school helmet giveaway to all ages in August.
Breeana Greenberg is the city reporter for the Dana Point Times. She graduated from Chapman University with a bachelor of arts degree in English. Before joining Picket Fence Media, she worked as a freelance reporter with the Laguna Beach Independent. Breeana can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org