FULTON, NY – The Fulton Police Department held its annual Bike Rodeo to give away free helmets and promote bike safety.
Each year, roughly 100 or more children participate in the free event, said Lieutenant Ralph McCann.
The event allowed children to complete a bicycle safety obstacle course alongside a Fulton PD Bike Patrol Officer to learn the rules of the road and safe practices while bicycling.
Kids could bring their own bike or use one provided by the department and some were even able to pick out a refurbished bike to keep courtesy of Doyle’s Bike Sales.
Once the obstacle course was completed, each child received a ticket to place in a raffle for one of eight brand new bicycles.
Local sponsors helped to donate the bicycles. The Fulton Fire Department donated two bikes, Catholic Charities donated one bike, the Fulton Alliance Church donated two bikes, Dunkin Donuts donated two bikes, and Menters Ambulance donated one bike.
Members of Oswego Health were on hand to properly fit the free helmets for each child.
Additionally, the Rotary Club donated food and volunteers for the event, Dunkin Donuts provided free donuts, Menters Ambulance provided information on summer safety, the Police Benevolent Association provided air hops for entertainment, Oswego County Traffic Safety ran a bike safety course for tricycles, Child Advocacy Center provided free books and internet safety information, Oswego County Opportunities provided free crafts and the Oswego County Sheriff’s Office allowed kids to participate in Operation Safe Child.
Officers were able to register all new bikes at the event, which following new law as of earlier this year, requires bikes to only be registered one time for the duration of ownership.
McCann explained that the department receives $2,000 from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration with a grant from the New York Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee to provide free helmets and bike safety education.
Various members of the Fulton PD travel to schools throughout Fulton to teach bike safety as part of the grant funding as well, he added.
Anyone in need of a free helmet can stop by the Fulton Police Department located at 141 S. First St.
McCann confirmed that not wearing a helmet when under the age of 14 is against the law. Similar to a vehicle seatbelt, if a child is not wearing a ticket, the parent could be ticketed.