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The children at the Growing Place, a pre-school run by Bedford Baptist Church, got a recent visit by the Bedford Police Department.
The effort part of a bicycle safety program and one of the police department’s bicycle patrol officers shows up each year. This time, they got two patrol officers — Joe Dooley and Tim Stanley — along with Lt. Todd Foreman.
The children all brought their bikes and the two patrol officers rode with them in the church’s parking lot. This was a do-as-we-do lesson as one of the points they stressed was bicycle helmets. It makes an impression on the youth to see the police officers wearing the helmets that they are telling the youth to wear.
“What’s the most important bike equipment I have today?” Stanley asked the children.
“Helmet!” they chorused.
According to Stanley, a majority of serious injuries sustained by cyclists in accidents are head injuries because they aren’t wearing helmets.
The officers also pointed to the sunglasses they were wearing. Stanley helped the children understand that a bicycle’s tires can kick up small stones which could hit another cyclist following behind. The sunglasses offer protection.
“If you have sun glasses on, it’s going to bounce off,” Stanley said.
Stanley likes working bicycle patrol.
“The real reason I like to ride a bike is because it’s easier to sneak up on people,” he said after his presentation to the children.
The bicycle patrol is also good for traffic control in town.
“We can do as much traffic enforcement on bikes as we can in cars,” he said.