Cycling along the right side of a truck in NYC was always nerve-wracking–particularly when you remembered the news stories about bicyclists who were killed because the driver couldn’t or didn’t see them. Even in relatively bike-friendly Europe, the problem is bad enough that EU Member States have issued a mandate that new trucks, buses and heavy-duty vehicles from 2022 onward, and all newly-registered vehicles in those categories from 2024 onward, must contain on-board safety systems including pedestrian and cyclist detection systems that provide warnings and/or prevent collisions.
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It would not be practical for fleet owners to buy all-new vehicles that meet the requirements. Thus auto parts manufacturer Continental AG has designed and built a retrofittable system called RightViu, “the pioneering solution for effectively minimizing the potential danger that lurks in the blind spot.”
The company claims the system is flexible and modular enough to be installed to any vehicle, and that it provides 4 meters of coverage to the side and 14 meters rearward, which exceeds the 2.5m/6m distances specified by the regulations. Here’s the protected area that the sensors can pick up within:
And here’s what it looks like when the system is tripped/activated by a cyclist:
By the way, it’s not clear in the video with the music bed, but Continental says that a buzzer sounds in conjunction with the flashing red light.
I’d like to see a more strident alert, but I suppose it’s better than nothing. I’d love to see a design competition showing some alternate warning options.