19 January 2011

LED Lights Warn Motorists and Protect Cyclists

This. Is. Brilliant.

Once again, once again it's the Dutch who refuse to Ignore The Bull and choose instead to place the responsibility on the motorists. There is the External Airbags on Cars to protect cyclists and pedestrians and now there is this.

Look at that film. Not only are there speed bumps in place to slow cars (and provide the cyclists with an even surface), the LED lights warn cars when bicycles are crossing. At the moment there are LED pedestrian crossings at some 20 locations in the Netherlands. In Papendrecht there is now a variation on a roundabout for cyclists as well.

According to local authorities this is intended to be a sustainably safe roundabout because of the elevated bicycle and pedestrian crossings and islands.

But apparently these measures were insufficient to ensure the safety of cyclists, so additional striking LED lighting was installed in the road surface. The manufacturer provided software made specifically for this location, which would ensure reliable detection of cyclists.

The use of LED lights to warn drivers of cyclists is not entirely novel. At the Nansenplein roundabout in Goes, LED lights have been incorporated into the road surface that start flashing when cyclists are approaching. At the same time the warning signs on either side of the crossing will light up as well.

The Dutch Fietsberaad says that "the use of flashing LEDs is controversial, however. According to opponents to this approach, drivers might start counting on being warned of cyclists by means of LEDs, even where this is not the case".

However, a combination of lights and speedbumps, however, make this solution quite brilliant indeed.

Copenhagen is experimenting with LED lights to warn motorists about the prescence of cyclists. You can read about this and see a film about it in this earlier post, LED Lights for Cyclists and Motorists

Via: Fietsberaad