Safe Routes to School (SRTS)

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Tires n Tennies - (T-n-T) Tuesdays!

T-n-T Tuesdays logo

Tuesdays are for tires and tennies!! Students are encouraged to walk, bicycle, skateboard, scoot or rollerblade to school everyday but especially on Tuesdays!

School is in session! This time of year brings an increase in Pedestrian and Bicycle activities. Check out the information below to keep kids safe!  

The City of Loveland's Public Works Department has partnered with the Thompson School District to promote the Safe Routes to School Program. This program benefits children and the community by reducing traffic congestion in school zones, improving air quality, increasing physical activity of children and adults, and promoting safe neighborhoods.

What is Safe Routes to School?

Safe Routes to School (SRTS) is a program that encourages families to use alternative modes of transportation, such as walking, riding a bike/scooter, or rollerblading when going to school. Exercise and safety are key components of the program.

40 years ago, roughly half of all 5 to 18 year olds walked or biked to school. Today, nearly 90% are driven by vehicle or bus. Loveland's SRTS Program hopes to change these statistics locally.

With more students walking or bicycling to school, traffic congestion around school zones will decrease, creating safer school zones. Students will become more active, leading to healthier habits.

Safe Routes to School is a comprehensive approach that provides Federal funding to local governments and communities, law enforcement, health care providers and educators whose programs are focused on K-8 grades that improve or make school routes safer for children when walking and bicycling. successful programs involve a whole community and encompass the "5Es": Evaluation, Encouragement, Education, Enforcement and Engineering.

Click here to view the "5 Es" of Safety Flyer.

Loveland's Safe Routes program has two primary goals:

  1. Walking is a fun and healthy way to spend time with your children while teaching them skills that can serve them well throughout life. The walk to school is a great time to use these safety tips.
  2. Where it is safe, get families walking and cycling to school and where it is not safe, make changes and/or educate students and citizens on pedestrian and cycling safety.
  • Less automobile traffic plus more families walking or biking to school equals a safer pedestrian and bicycling environment, and less traffic congestion for everyone - especially students who walk or bicycle to school daily.
  • Non-vehicular travel to and from school is a simple way for children and families to incorporate exercise into their daily lives. 

Check with your elementary school for Back To School T-n-T events!

10 Reasons to Walk or Bike to School with Your Child Safe Routes to School mascot, Smarty Fox with school children

  1. It's a perfect opportunity to talk and spend time together!
  2. It's healthy, physically AND mentally
  3. It's good for the environment
  4. It teaches independence and decision making
  5. It provides a chance to enjoy the changing seasons and weather
  6. It's a wonderful way to build strong, safe neighborhoods
  7. It reduces traffic and saves gas (money!)
  8. It's time away from electronic media
  9. Being a pedestrian is an important life skill, this is a great time to practice
  10. It's FUN!

 


Safe Routes Safety Tips

Each year hundreds of thousands of children are treated in emergency rooms for bicycle related accidents. There are a few simple things you can do to avoid these injuries. Use a helmet. Make sure your bike is in good working condition. Be Seen. Follow the rules of the road.

Bicycle Helmets

  • Always wear a bike helmet when riding a bicycle, skateboarding or riding a scooter! Helmets can reduce the chance of a brain injury by up to 85%. Helmets protect your head AND your brain.
  • Wear a helmet that fits properly. A properly fitting helmet will not move around when you move your head. It should not be too large or too small.
  • Always fasten the straps of your helmet. Make sure they are snug but not too tight. Once fastened, you shouldn't be able to move the helmet around on your head.

    To determine which type of helmet is best for you, see the Consumer Product Safety Commission's helmet flyer.
    For a flyer on properly fitting your bike helmet, click here.

Bicycle Safety

  • Make sure your bike is the correct size for you.
  • When standing straight up, there should be between 1" to 3" between the top bar of your bike and you.
  • Before riding your bike, make sure your seat is tightened and is set to the correct height.
  • Check your tires - make sure the wheels are secure, the brakes are working and that the tires are not flat and that they have the right amount of air.
  • Make sure to check your chain and oil it regularly.
  • Adjust handlebars to the correct height, make sure it's tightened and that rubber grips are in place and in good condition.
  • Click here for a Bicycle Inspection Checklist.

Be Seen - Safe Clothing
One of the best ways to avoid injury on a bike is to Be Seen!

  • Wear bright or white clothing. It's harder for motorists to see you if you're wearing dark clothes - especially at night.
  • Pant legs should be gathered with straps or rubber bands to keep them from getting caught up in the chain.
  • Make sure there are reflectors on your bike. Wear reflective clothing at night.
  • Also, be sure to always wear shoes when riding a bike - avoid sandals, flip-flips, heels or cleats - NEVER ride barefoot.
  • If carrying a backpack while riding, make sure straps are tucked away and that it fits properly so nothing can get caught up in the tires or spokes.

Rules of the Road
Following the rules of the road will help keep you safe from injury.

  • Follow traffic signs/signals. Stop at Stop signs and red or yellow lights. Yield for pedestrians.
  • Cross at designated intersections. Use the crosswalk and walk your bike across rather than ride. 
  • Ride on the right-hand side of the road - with the traffic - never against the flow of traffic.
  • Children should ride on sidewalks, while adults and teenagers use bike lanes.
  • Always keep an eye out for cars, trucks and motorcycles. Be aware of driveways where cars may pull out unexpectedly.
  • Be aware of the road/sidewalk on which you are riding. Be aware of uneven surfaces, puddles, gravel and rocks, slippery surfaces and of course - pedestrians!
  • Always keep your hands on the handlebars.
  • Avoid riding too close to parked cars - doors can open unexpectedly and cause you to crash.
  • When riding in a group, always ride single-file.
  • Never grab onto moving vehicles to "hitch a ride"!

Check out a Totally Awesome Bike Safety Adventure Video

 

 

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