Free Bike Helmet Giveaway Sunday

BROOKLYN -

City transportation officials will be at the Boro Park Y Sunday to distribute 600 bike helmets for a free helmet fitting and giveaway, Councilman David Greenfield announced Tuesday.

The event, at 4912-14 Avenue, will be held from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m. and helmets will be distributed on a first-come-first-served basis, for children and adults alike.

This free event comes at a time when the popularity of cycling has exploded across the entire city, spurred by the installation of hundreds of miles of bike lanes and the launch of the CitiBike municipal bike-sharing program.

“Groups of children having fun and getting some exercise on their bikes is a common sight on every single block in our community,” Greenfield said.

According to the DOT, bicycling more than doubled in New York City between 2007 and 2011. And, as a result of infrastructure improvements and safety initiatives including helmet giveaways, the rate of serious injury and fatalities among commuter bike riders has dropped by 75 percent over the past decade.

The DOT has distributed more than 50,000 helmets to cyclists around the city since 2006, and plans to distribute an additional 10,000 helmets over the next two years.

Statistics show that helmets reduce the chance of death or serious injury by 85 percent, and that more than 90 percent of cyclists killed while riding a bike were not wearing a helmet at the time. Currently, helmets are required by city law for children age 13 or younger and for all commercial cyclists.