Child cycling injuries drop dramatically
Road safety experts at Oxfordshire County Council have expressed their delight at a dramatic fall in the number of child cyclists injured on the county's roads.
And there is double cause for celebration as 2006 was also a record year for the number of children taking part in the county council's cycle training scheme.
Only 34 young people were injured in 2006. This represents the lowest figure since records began in 1979 and far less than half of the 89 children injured in 1997.
How many children have been injured in recent years?
How many children took up training?
In 2006 a record 3,657 children took up free training. Oxfordshire County Council has a long history of providing cycle training to children. The service remains free in Oxfordshire at a time when other councils are starting to make a charge.
The council has 700 volunteers who help deliver the scheme to school children aged 9+. Training is delivered largely through primary schools. Children only need a road worthy bicycle and a cycle helmet to take part.
Wendy Jennings, Oxfordshire County Council Road Safety Officer, said: "I am thrilled that so many children have taken part in our training schemes and that the number of injuries has declined so much. What a credit this is to our volunteers who put in so much hard work. It must be a delight to them to learn that their efforts have had such an impact.
Councillor David Robertson, Oxfordshire County Council's Cabinet Member for Transport, said: "It cannot be a co-incidence that the number of children trained has gone up while the number of injuries sustained has plummeted. This is an example of forward planning and thinking providing value for money for people in Oxfordshire as well as safeguarding our communities."
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