Whether it’s to day care, the playground or an excursion destination – parents like to take small children with them in bicycle trailers, cargo bikes or children’s bicycle seats. The child’s safety must always come first. CosmosDirekt, Generali’s direct insurance company in Germany, gives tips on this.
Parents like to use their two-wheelers when traveling with small children. No wonder – it often saves time and is also good for the environment, your own fitness, but also for your wallet. Despite all the advantages, 47.2 percent of the population in Germany consider it dangerous to take children in a bicycle trailer, cargo bike or bicycle seat. This was the result of a current Civey study commissioned by CosmosDirekt.
The Road Traffic Act (StVO) stipulates that only persons who have reached the age of 16 may transport children up to a maximum of seven years of age on a bicycle. However, the legislature does not prescribe a minimum age from which a child may be taken on a bicycle.
It is also stipulated that there must be special seats for children. There must be no risk of the child getting caught in the wheel spokes with their feet. The following applies in particular to bicycle trailers: If the trailer is designed for the transport of children, a maximum of two children up to the age of seven may ride along. The age limit does not apply when transporting a disabled child.
There is no legal requirement to wear a bicycle helmet in Germany, not even for children. But regardless of how the child is transported by bicycle, a helmet is an absolute must – for children and parents.
The bicycle should be checked regularly for road safety: Do the brakes and bicycle bell work correctly? Are the bicycle and bicycle trailer equipped with functioning bicycle lights and reflectors? For an even better signal effect, you can equip the bicycle trailer, cargo bike and the like with a flag or pennant. That way, you can be seen more quickly by other road users, especially in unmanageable traffic situations.
If the children sit behind their parents in the child seat or in the bicycle trailer, a rearview mirror on the bicycle handlebar also helps to keep an eye on the children. In addition, the child must always be secured with a belt. If there is only one child in the bicycle trailer, it should preferably sit in the middle or on the side facing away from the road, unless the manufacturer specifies otherwise.
If you take children with you in a bicycle trailer or cargo bike, you should ensure that you drive carefully and with foresight. The parking brake must be used so that the bicycle trailer or cargo bicycle does not become independent when getting in and out.
Caution is also required on narrow traffic islands: bicycle trailers and cargo bikes must not protrude into the street, as a passing vehicle may hit them. It is therefore best for parents to plan a route in advance that is as safe as possible. This means that construction sites, cul-de-sacs and main roads should be avoided if possible. Side roads or paths with designated bike lanes are safer. A bicycle trailer can only tip over in extreme conditions while driving, but you must not drive too fast and avoid driving over e.g. high curbs on one side.
Despite all precautions, an accident can always happen. Isolde Klein, insurance expert at CosmosDirekt, therefore advises: “Private accident insurance makes sense for anyone who regularly cycles, because it applies to all areas of life. Statutory accident insurance only helps in accidents that happen directly there and back. to work, school or university” .
In addition, according to the insurance expert, private liability insurance is important. Because if, for example, a cyclist accidentally causes damage to another person, you can quickly be confronted with compensation claims. Appropriate insurance can then protect against the financial consequences.
The article “Take children safely with your two-wheeled car” was published on July 21, 2022 in the category News by Solveig Grewe with the keywords traffic, bicycle, safety, helmet, road safety, insurance, news, released.