may propel themselves , there is an inherent , if not explicit , respon sibility for the parent . And that is why , fine print or large print , these manuals are put out . I doubt very much that a 10 - year - old pays little to no attention . He or she is only excited about getting out and experiencing that great sense of freedom that I think any child , including yourself and myself , first experienced when we got on a vehicle that we could propel by ourselves and control by our selves .
And I hope that our studies and our investigation can improve on the situation . But never once have I heard any agency in this Nation call for the banning of bicycles , and yet we have 300 plus deaths a year , or 105 as of last year . Nobody has called for the ban ning of horses or any of these other kinds of things .
Not very long ago in the State of Idaho , after 20 years of snow mobiling history in this Nation , a young man , well experienced , de capitated himself by driving through a barbed wire fence . Now , I don ' t know how you control those kinds of situations . I guess I am of the mind that some are , that maybe you just can ' t control all of it , but you should work , and I think you two are - - and I truly ap preciate your testimony - working toward causing the product to be safer . But causing it to be safer in a responsible frame that also says that the rider , that is , the parent has a responsibility for their own safety and their own action .
Thank you both very much . [ Applause . ]
Mr . BARNARD . There will be no demonstrations in this hearing . We will refrain from any type of demonstration of that kind .
Gentlemen , from time to time today we have heard - I have tried to compare this situation with riding a horse , riding a motorcycle , and other normal things that are done by children - I don ' t say mo torcycles , but riding a horse , a bicycle . And how do you compare that in a way that would be helpful as far as this hearing is con cerned ?
Dr . GREENSHER . Well , I agree with Mr . Craig wholeheartedly that parents have an enormous responsibility for the safety of their children . They need help with it . One of the reasons we are here is to try to supply them with some of that help .
Help applies , in the first instance , to making the product as safe as possible . We have taken the bicycle , we have put lights in the front . We have reflectorized it . We have arranged to see that noth ing collapses on it as far as handlebars are concerned . We still haven ' t solved the bicycle spoke problem . That is one aspect . The aspect of helmets , we are complaining very strongly through the Academy of Pediatrics through the parents to see that the children wear appropriate helmets when they use their bicycles .
We would like to go a step further in the vehicles that cause more severe injuries . We would like to see a law that the parent can use . When you are dealing with teenagers , it is a lot different than dealing with a 2 - year - old where you can put them in a car seat and tie them in , and you tell them the car doesn ' t go if he isn ' t secured in it .
With a 14 - year - old whose friend won ' t wear a helmet , it is a ter rible problem for the parent . But if the parent can say that it is State law or Federal law , or whatever , something stronger that