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Simple Safety Checks Can Help Prevent Biking Injuries
10/11/2010

CLEBURNE, Texas — The temperatures are cooling and many families are squeezing in more play time outdoors before the weather turns cold. Riding bicycles together can be a great family activity during the fall, but it’s crucial that families know how to wear and properly fit bike helmets.

Dr. Ayman Arouse
Dr. Ayman Arouse

An estimated one in seven bicyclists who died in traffic accidents in 2008 were between the ages of 5 and 15. And the injury rate for the same age group was significantly higher than that of other age groups.

“Too often we see family outings turn tragic when proper safety procedures aren’t followed,” said Dr. Ayman Arouse, a pediatrician who recently joined the medical staff at Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Cleburne. “It takes just a few minutes to secure safety gear such as bike helmets that can save a life or protect children from serious injuries.”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration suggests there are several steps to determine if a helmet fits properly. Parents should check that helmets:

  • Fit snugly and do not slide on the head
  • Sit even on the head, one to two widths of a finger above the eyebrow
  • Adjust straps so that the buckle is under the chin and the side straps lay around the ears in a V shape
  • Tighten the chin strap so that no more than two fingers can fit under the strap

Once all those measures are taken, the NHTSA recommends testing to verify that the helmet is on tight by leaning forward to check if it will fall in front of the eyes and yawning to see if the helmet moves down as it should.

For more information, visit nhtsa.gov.

About Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Cleburne
Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Cleburne is a 137-bed acute-care, full-service hospital that has served Cleburne and the Johnson County area since 1986. The hospital’s services include surgery, women’s services, urology, orthopedics and ear, nose and throat care. Texas Health Cleburne, an affiliate of the faith-based, nonprofit Texas Health Resources system, has been recognized with the 2007 Premier/Carescience Select Practice National Quality Award. For more information, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit TexasHealth.org/Cleburne.

About Texas Health Resources
Texas Health Resources is one of the largest faith-based, nonprofit health care delivery systems in the United States and the largest in North Texas in terms of patients served. Texas Health’s system of 13 hospitals includes Texas Health Harris Methodist, Texas Health Arlington Memorial, Texas Health Presbyterian, and an organization for medical research and education. Texas Health is a partner in eight additional hospitals or surgery centers. Texas Health Physicians Group provides a variety of models for engagement with physicians. Texas Health Partners is a joint venture development and management company owned by Texas Health Resources. Texas Health MedSynergies is a joint venture that offers physicians a range of office management and other business services to support their practices. Texas Health SingleSource Staffing is a joint venture designed to help Texas Health hospitals improve patient care by recruiting and retaining quality nurses and allied healthcare professionals. For more information about Texas Health Resources, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit TexasHealth.org.

Doctors on the medical staff practice independently and are not employees or agents of the hospital.

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