For several years Dodges Ferry Primary School co-ordinated a bike safety program for Grade 5 students to encourage safe travel to and from school by increasing road safety and bike safety awareness, promoting physical activity and fostering bike skills.
Comments from students show the benefits:
“I learnt how to give way, about the power positon and about roundabouts.”
“I learnt how to go wide around cars so I don’t get hit by car doors.”
“I improved at road crossings, indicating and breaking.”
“I really enjoyed the big bike ride at the end around our whole area.”
The program was part of the school’s approach to healthy lifestyles and grew from parent interest in encouraging safer walking and riding to/from school. For several years a Grade 5 program was funded with support from Neighbourhood Watch, the School Association and Sorell Council.
In 2012/13 the School Association secured an NRMA Road Safety Grant to fund the program and wider promotion of bike safety for our school community.
In December 2013 the School Association received $500 from the Sorell & District Community Bank Branch of Bendigo Bank to donate towards purchase of a class set of 25 mountain bikes for year round use in the school’s PE program.
The School Association also worked closely with Sorell Council and the Department of Infrastructure Environment and Resources to address road safety issues and reduce the risk of accidents near the school with improved signage and safer road crossing points.
Critical safety messages – wear a helmet, keep left, look behind – are reinforced in a Be Bike Safe flyer for students and their families (available from the school office) to increase understanding of safer road use and suggested bike routes to/from school.
Students riding to/from school should ride on the footpaths where possible or keep to the left hand side of the road. When riding in a group, stay in single file, one behind the other.
Always wheel your bike through the main school entrance around to the bike rack next to the canteen. Secure your bike with a lock and keep your helmet with your school bag in your classroom.
The preferred routes are:
- Along the pathways beside Carlton River Road or Carlton Beach Road.
- Use the pedestrian island crossing point at First Avenue, then pathways to the swings and school car park crossing.
- From Forcett and Lewisham use the gravel pathway beside Old Forcett Road.