Mum turns to the internet for advice asking, “should you let your kids ride around the neighbourhood by themselves?”

The mum of two shared, “My kids (8 and 10 years) have just started riding more confidently and are keen to cycle to their friend’s house around the corner.

“My husband always reminds me that he rode his BMX to and from school when he was 11 but I’m pretty adamant that they’re too young.”

What mums says

Many parents argued that it really isn’t safe for kids today to head out on their own. While others said we need to teach kids to be independent and instill in them safety advice that they must adhere to.

Mum turns to the internet for advice asking, “should you let your kids ride around the neighbourhood by themselves?”

Morgan said, “I’m with you all the way. Times have changed, our children are irreplaceable.”

Another mum said, “Hell no! Streets today are not as safe as your husbands days.”

“Nope! It’s a fucked up world these days,” said another.

Maria said, ” No I’m always outside to watch them ride around the court.”

Emily shared, “I guess it depends on the maturity of your kids and the distance of their friends house. As a kid my friend and I would ride our bikes between each other’s houses. I wouldn’t let my eldest, who is 10 because I just don’t think *she* would be capable.”

Rebecca said, “My 10yr old rides his bike or walk to and from school they’re together give it a try.”

Jade said, “My 9 and 10yr old ride to their friends house and sometimes to school. School is only 2 blocks away and there friends wouldn’t be much further.”

Eve shared, “Yes, I have an 12 yr old who has been riding for 2 years. He’s been taught safety, road rules, how to cross roads etc. It all comes down to the preparation and maturity of the kid I think. Our almost 9 yr old will be allowed to go out soon, once we are sure he’s ready.”

Rachel said, “I’d do it a couple times with them and then let them go alone. Line it up with the parents so they can shoot you a text letting you know they arrive safely. They gotta start somewhere.”

What the experts say

While it is actually illegal in some states for children to ride their bikes on the road, it is mostly up to the discretion of parents.

Generally speaking, children under the age of twelve do not have the neuro-physiological and psychological development to cope with complex traffic situations on their own, shares Vic State Govt website.

Road safety authorities recommend that before the age of nine or ten years children should not ride a bicycle in traffic without adult supervision. Depending on their cycling skills and experience, some children over this age may still require supervision.

Children under the age of twelve may ride on footpaths as may a supervising adult. They are required to give way to pedestrians and to wheel their bicycles over pedestrian and children’s crossings. Children aged twelve years or older are required by law to ride on the road.

Do you let your kids ride by themselves?

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  • I used to as a kid, but things have changed so much since then so I dont think I would be comfortable with it!

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  • There is definitely more vehicles on the road then there was when we were growing up. More families have 2 or more cars, most transport companies are using longer trucks which take longer to come to a stop even when driving at speed limit or less than cars do because of the weight of the vehicle even when it has no load on / in the trailer. Also houses now have high fences and it is impossible to see past them until you are out to the footpath. Even if you check somebody can come along in that very short time.

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  • I’ve just started to let my 6 and 8 yr olds ride around our street which is a culder sac, but we have taught them both about not talking to strangers, road safety, and always asking before they go

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  • If you aren’t comfortable with it don’t do it. Things are different now than they used to be.

    Reply


  • I believe it should be supervised.
    Otherwise you have children riding to places they shouldn’t or mucking up or worse. Like there are children in my neighbourhood that have no concept of cars and the environment around them. They will ride out in front of drivers and the drivers are being peppered in the face by the sun setting. They have simply been lucky..

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  • I think it depends. I see a lot of kids riding their bikes alone where I live. But I am in regional WA and generally kids ride on the footpath anyway.

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  • It really depends where it is. I doubt I’d let my kid even go around the block here until he’s at least in highschool. But if it was at my mums it’d be ok a bit younger.

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  • I had the freedom to do it as a kid. But thè world is very different now. My 8 year old isn’t allowed and I doubt i will let her anytime soon

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  • When l was young we rode around by ourselves and it wasn’t a problem!


    • I lived in a country town and rode my bike every school day 2 miles each way along a major rode when I was 10, hard to believe it now, I can’t imagine letting my child do the same.

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  • When my son was 11yr old he rode his bike to school, but he rode on the pavements. Think it depends on the maturity and responsibility of the child and the business of the road. Some school zones are an ant nest with cars who’re driving dangerously and lack of parking spaces doesn’t help either.

    Reply


  • We live out of town so my youngest rides up and down our driveway. We I was younger, we were allowed to ride around up and down the street by ourselves

    Reply

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