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Traumatic bike injuries for children triple in Palm Beach County

WPBF West Palm Beach logo WPBF West Palm Beach 5/12/2020
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It’s a nightly activity for the Thakar family of Palm Beach Gardens.

8-year-old twins Bianca and Sonia grab their bikes and go for a ride.

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“They actually learned during this COVID,” said the girls’ father, Tap Thakar. “It’s actually been a very positive experience.”

There’s something else the girls just learned: you never go biking without a helmet.

“Just in case they fall,” Tap said. “It’s so important to protect their head because head injuries can affect them for the rest of their life.”

That is exactly the message a group called Safe Kids Palm Beach County wants everyone to hear.

Here’s why they’re so concerned: the number of children in the county suffering traumatic injuries from bike falls has nearly tripled from March of last year to March of this year.

“The thing that’s the most concerning about this is we also know that 91% of those kids were not wearing bike helmets,” said Kathy Wall, program director for Safe Kids PBC.

Wall believes the increase in injuries is at least partially due to the quarantine.

Children have more time on their hands and fewer places to go, so they’re on their bicycles a lot.

She said that is leading to more injuries, which means parents need to be more vigilant about their children wearing helmets.

“Start them off with helmets as soon as possible so they know that’s the normal thing they’re supposed to do,” Wall said.

The Thakars did that with their girls and said they always grab their helmet before leaving for their nightly bike ride.

“It’s important that we keep our kids safe,” Wall said. “We have equipment, and we have mechanisms to do that.”

Safe Kids PBC produced a video teaching the proper way to wear a helmet.

You can see that video at

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