Bicycling is a popular fitness activity that provides an alternative means of commuting to and from work. However, bicycling without a helmet can lead to serious head injuries. Without a helmet, the fall from a bike to the ground can kill you. For this reason, a certified helmet is essential and can greatly reduce your chance of a head injury.
Why do you need a bicycle helmet?
Head injuries with bicyclist are noted in 65,000 emergency room cases and 7,700 hospital admissions.
Bicyclist hospitalized with head injuries are 20 times as likely to die as those without.
56 of fatally injured bicyclists are age 20 or older.
According to the Center of Disease Control and Prevention, each year more than 500,000 people in the US are treated in emergency departments and more than 700 people die as a result of bicycle-related injuries.
What can happen to your head in an accident?
In a severe bicycle accident your skull may fracture and bone fragments and other objects may penetrate your brain. However, your brain may also be injured by violent impacts that leave your skull essentially undamaged. Most brain injuries are irreversible.
A good helmet protects your head by giving your skull and brain a little time to match speeds with suddenly encountered objects. The easiest way to find a well-made and reliable helmet is to look for the "Snell" certification sticker on the inside of a helmet.
When riding bicycles always:
Wear a properly fitted bicycle helmet and make sure the bicycle is ready to ride by checking equipment
Avoid busy streets
Headlights and rear lights are extremely important, especially when riding at night
Take the whole lane when appropriate
Signal your turns
Never ride with portable music players
Ride with the traffic flow and obey all traffic laws
Look before turning
Never ride on a sidewalk or area that isn't designated for bicycles
See and be seen by wearing something bright, even during the day
Don't ride in an automobile's blind spot
Ride further left to hold your lane
All personnel who ride bicycles must wear a properly secured and approved helmet at all times (day and night).
Bicycle helmets must be approved by the American National Standards Institute, Snell Foundation. A combat helmet does not conform to these standards and will not be worn in lieu of an approved helmet.
Reflective vests must be worn at all times when riding in uniform.
When not in uniform, reflective vests must be worn during hours of darkness.
Bicycles will be registered at the 8 SFS Pass & ID Office.
Riding bicycles on sidewalks is strictly prohibited.
Remember that bicycle riders on public roads have the same rights and responsibilities as motorists and are subject to the same rules and regulations. Be sure to read the 8th Fighter Wing Community of Standards for more information.
For all you oxygen-starved joggers, think safety! In addition to wearing the reflective clothing and warming up properly, be sure to jog only in approved locations when wearing earphones.
Here are a few tips to keep you safe on Kunsan:
Will wear a reflective vest or other reflective material while on a public roadway, street, bicycle path, or any other right-of-way during the hours of sunset to sunrise.
Must not wear headphones on or adjacent to (e.g., sidewalks) roads and streets. The running track is not considered adjacent to a street or road. By exception, joggers may wear headphones while running along the green highlighted path shown in the Community of Standards.
During the last softball season, several Kunsan members received knee injuries while playing softball. The majority of these injuries were caused by twisting the Anterior Cruciate Ligament. ACL injuries can take place without any contact at all. It can simply occur when a player tries to make a quick turn while running.
Perform these simple items to avoid softball injuries this season:
Warming up: Warming up properly before a game is one of the easiest ways to avoid injuries. Do not stretch a muscle that is cold. Spend 15 minutes jogging, throwing catches, and then take a couple of laps around the field. Once you have worked up a sweat, then do your stretching.
Dress for success: Aside from being physically prepared, players (especially the catcher) need to dress for the occasion. In a recent softball mishap, a catcher who was not wearing a mask, suffered a broken right cheekbone when he was hit by a ball thrown by the first baseman.
Know your surroundings: Pay attention to the conditions of the field. Many games are played on fields which are less than perfect. Players, coaches and umpires must inspect the field for unsafe conditions. The umpire has the option to cancel the game due to unsafe field conditions.
Nearly every year Air Force members suffer from drowning mishaps in rivers, lakes and pools. A recent American Red Cross survey shows that one in four people know someone who has drowned. With so many planning to be in, on or near the water, it is important to follow the basics of water safety.
Water Safety Tips recommended by the American Red Cross:
Swim in designated areas supervised by lifeguards.
Always swim with a buddy; do not allow anyone to swim alone.
Enroll in swimming instruction courses.
Never leave a young child unattended near water and do not trust a child's life to another child; teach children to always ask permission to go near water.
Have young children or inexperienced swimmers wear U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets around water, but do not rely on life jackets alone.
Don't dive into unfamiliar waters.
Learn basic water rescue and water survival techniques.
Learn CPR to know what to do after pulling a drowning victim from the water.
Remember that alcohol does not mix with swimming.
Know your ability.
The Red Cross creed for lifesaving has four steps in order: reach, throw, row and go.
Try to reach the person. Use your hand, or anything else that can be held onto, such as a jacket, a belt, a rope, an oar or a fishing pole.
Throw something to the person that will float such as plastic bottle, beach toy, or a piece of wood.
If the victim is too far away, then you will have to go to the individual by using a log, an air mattress, a surfboard, a small boat, a raft, or anything else that you can row or paddle with your hands.
Swim out and tow the victim to shore, but try this only if you are a good swimmer and trained in life saving techniques
CASE STUDY: A 23-year-old staff sergeant went to the lake with his friends to enjoy camping, boating and swimming. After consuming alcohol, the sergeant and three friends decided to go swimming after dark. After returning to shore, the friends noticed the sergeant was missing. Search and Rescue crews discovered the body of the sergeant at the bottom of lake the next day. His blood alcohol content was 0.20 percent.
Swimming safety can be outlined in a few key points:
Wingman Up - swim with a Wingman every time. Even experienced swimmers have drowned. If you are with someone they will be able to help you out.
Know Your Limits - Don't overextend yourself. Take breaks and don't get fatigued far from shore.
Swim in Safe Areas - A lifeguard can make the difference between life and death
*Supervisors need to ensure surveys are completed on all members who participate in high risk activities. The appointed USR and/or PACAF CARES monitor within each unit are the POCs for adding and removing members in PACAF CARES.
Click on resource center and activity list to find pre-made briefings on: