New technology may help to prevent bicycle accidents
For the past few years, automakers and safety experts have explored the possibility of using car-to-car communications systems as a means to preventing serious car accidents. These new technologies show a great deal of promise and, by some estimates, are likely to be included in new vehicle models in just a few years. But can these technologies also be used to prevent accidents involving bicycles?
A team of engineering students at Northeastern University in Boston believes that smart bikes could be the key to preventing accidents between cars and bicycles. They have developed a series of technologies they call the Interactive Bicyclist Accident Prevention System and they hope to make it available sometime in the next few years.
The system consists of multiple sensors that are mounted on the front and back of a bicycle. If a car or other vehicle gets within three feet of an IBAPS equipped bike, the system triggers several lasers, which project an emergency bike lane onto the pavement. In addition, if a car gets too close, the system will emit a loud alert, which will let drivers know that they are not providing the bicycle enough room.
Not all the system’s safety features are directed toward drivers, however. For example, another important feature of the system is its ability to communicate with both other cars and features located along the roadway. If the system determines that a cyclist is approaching a red light too quickly, it will vibrate the handle bars to let them know that it is necessary to slow down. The system is also equipped with Bluetooth technology, which allows it to send information to riders’ smart phones. This will allow riders to examine data about their riding habits and make decisions about how to become safer when riding on the road.
Unlike cars and trucks, which have seen vast improvements in safety technology over the years, bicycles have remained largely the same for a very long time. As an increasing number of people choose to ride their bikes to work and school, improving bicycle safety features is an emerging priority. It is too soon to tell whether a smart bike system is the answer, but it is certainly a step in the right direction.
For those who have been injured in car or bicycle accidents, it is important to get advice from a knowledgeable, experienced personal injury attorney. In some cases, you may entitled to compensation for your injuries.