COLUMBUS, Ohio, April 13, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- A record-breaking number of free bicycle helmets will be going to children across Ohio this spring thanks to a continued partnership between the Ohio Department of Transportation and the Ohio Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (Ohio AAP). More than 10,000 bicycle helmets will be distributed this year as part of the Ohio AAP's Put a Lid on It! Bike Helmet Safety Awareness campaign in conjunction with Bike Helmet Safety Awareness Month May 2017.
"We know that 75 percent of bike-related fatalities would be prevented with a helmet," said Melissa Wervey Arnold, Chief Executive Officer of the Ohio AAP. "We are incredibly grateful for ODOT's support of our Put a Lid on It campaign again this year. With their continued support, we will be able to supply more bike helmets to children this year – and save more lives – than ever before."
At an event in Columbus ODOT and the Ohio AAP distributed bike helmets to local organizations across the state and provided training sessions for biking education, including how to properly fit children with bike helmets.
A combination of efforts is necessary to effectively increase helmet usage rates among Ohio children including raising awareness of the benefits, encouraging model behavior among adults, distributing bike helmets to Ohio children and advocating for supportive public policies.
"Spring is here and children are getting out to enjoy the great outdoors on their bikes. We want them to be as safe as possible by having the right equipment," said ODOT Director Jerry Wray. "We're happy to be a partner in this effort to get helmets to children who may not otherwise have easy access to them."
As part of Ohio's transportation system, the state has 4,207 miles of bike routes and trails, including the Ohio to Erie Trail which connects Cincinnati and Cleveland. Since 2008, ODOT has invested $60 million into the Safe Routes to School program which builds sidewalks and improves street crossings and encourages children to walk or bike to school safely.
To learn more about Bike Helmet Safety Awareness Week, visit the Put A Lid On It Facebook page at www.facebook.com/bikehelmetsafety or the Chapter website at www.ohioaap.org. To learn more about the Ohio Safe Routes to School program visit: www.dot.state.oh.us/saferoutes
The Ohio Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (Ohio AAP) promotes the health, safety and well being of children and adolescents so they may reach their full potential. The Ohio AAP works to accomplish this by addressing the needs of children, their families, and their communities, and by supporting Chapter members through advocacy, education, research, service, and improving the systems through which they deliver pediatric care.
Ohio's highways are essential to keeping and creating new jobs. With a mission to provide easy movement of people and goods from place to place, the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) is responsible for maintaining one of the largest transportation networks in the nation. Guided by ethical principles and accountability, ODOT works to improve safety, enhance travel and advance economic development. As a $2.8 billion enterprise, the department wisely invests in its core services of snow and ice removal, annual construction program and highway maintenance operations.
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SOURCE The Ohio Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics