Applications open for free bicycle helmet program
Published 2:23 pm Thursday, January 12, 2023
Research shows bicycle helmets save lives and prevent serious injuries. As part of the annual Bicycle Helmet Initiative to encourage more children to wear them, the North Carolina Department of Transportation will give free protective headwear to organizations across the state to distribute to youth cyclists.
“Wearing a helmet is an easy way to reduce risk of head injuries when riding a bicycle,” said Ryan Brumfield, director of the state’s Integrated Mobility Division. “We hope the Bicycle Helmet Initiative will help reduce bicycle injuries and raise awareness about the importance of safe bicycling practices.”
“In just the last five years, the program has provided people over 45,000 free bike helmets, including nearly 20,000 helmets provided to over 260 organizations in 2022,” stated a press release from NCDOT. “Research shows bicycle helmets prevent 60% of head injury deaths and they reduce the risk of head injuries by up to 85%. Unfortunately, less than half of all children wear a helmet when they ride a bike.”
To apply, find instructions and guidelines at NCDOT’s Bicycle Helmet Initiative webpage at bit.ly/3QoVJoz. Applicants may request 25, 50, 75 or 100 helmets, and awardees will receive the helmets in the spring.
The Bicycle Helmet Initiative started in 2007 and works with local communities to spark interest in bicycle safety. As part of that, applicants should consider partnering with a local law enforcement agency, parks and recreation department, church or other organization to host bike safety events. The initiative is paid for using sales of the Share the Road specialty license plate.