Assemblyman James N. Tedisco (R,I,C-Schenectady/Saratoga) today encouraged bicyclists to wear a helmet because it could save their lives. Tedisco has been implementing a community outreach program aimed at children who are “caught” wearing or not wearing their bike helmets by local law enforcement officers this summer.
“Every year, more than 500,000 bicyclists are brought to the hospital. Of those, about 70,000 are due to head injuries. It is tragic when we consider that about 1,300 cyclists will die this year from head injuries with almost half being children under the age of 16,” said Tedisco. “A helmet can reduce the risk of serious head injury by up to 85 percent.”
Tedisco explains that his program gets everyone in the community involved in making sure that cyclists, particularly children, are wearing their bike helmets. Local law enforcement officials who see a bicyclist wearing a helmet issue a “ticket” including a coupon for free ice cream. Those “caught” without a helmet are given a safety talk by the officer.
“Encouraging our young riders to wear helmets is a critical step in promoting bicycle safety. Riders should be rewarded for developing this common sense safety habit early in their lives” said Tedisco.
Tedisco concluded by thanking the sponsors of the program including Dick’s Sporting Goods, Stewart’s Shops, Ben & Jerry’s, Friendly’s, as well as the law enforcement agencies who kindly participate. For more information on Tedisco’s bike safety program, contact his district office at (518) 370-2812.