14 December 2007
Intelligent Sensors and Diodes Save Cycling Lives
Copenhagen is about to start testing a new system of diode lights aimed at reducing the danger of bike-vechicle collisions at four particularly dangerous intersections.
Blinking diodes [similar to the photo above on a Copenhagen bike lane] are placed in the asphalt on the final stretch towards the intersection and, when a cylists passes a sensor, the lights start to blink and warn motorists to the fact that a cycle is present.
There has been a problem with large trucks turning right and hitting cyclists (who have the right of way) continuing straight on. A study by consultancy company Trafictech shows that the cyclists are visible in the truck's mirrors, but the drivers often forget to check.
The combined cost of a serious accident involving a single cyclist is 1.7 million Danish kroner [€225,000]. It only costs 200,000 kroner [€26,000] to install these lights at an intersection.
In the Danish town of Grenaa they are testing another system for reducing the same kind of accidents.
300 bikes were installed with a tiny R-fid chip and a battery, placed on the handlebars.
When the bikes approach an intersection, the R-fid triggers a warning sign for cars and trucks. The animation above can explain it better than I can... :-)