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Santander Bike Scheme to Test New ‘Laserlight’ to Reduce Blind Spot Risk

Santander is currently testing a new ‘laserlight’ on a number of their London hire bikes in an attempt to improve night-time visibility for cyclists in the capital.

Cyclist Blind Spot
The ‘Blaze laserlight’ is a bike light that uses a green laser to project a bicycle symbol six metres onto the road ahead, alerting other road users to an approaching cyclist at night.

Unlike the beams of standard bike lights, the laser projection is said to be visible from various perspectives, letting riders be seen in situations where they may otherwise remain invisible, such as when lorry drivers fail to see cyclists riding in their blind spots when turning left at traffic lights or junctions.

Almost two thirds of cyclists who are killed or seriously injured each year are involved in collisions at, or near, road junctions. HGVs present a particularly dangerous threat to cyclists, especially in built up urban areas. Out of the eight cycling deaths in the capital so far this year, seven have involved HGVs. Although such vehicles make up only 5% of UK road traffic, they are involved in 23% of all cyclist deaths, typically when turning left at junctions.

Santander say they are currently testing the light “robustly” on 250 London hire bikes before a prospective city-wide rollout later next year. Transport for London says the lights have already undergone trials at the Transport Research Laboratory, and they will continue to monitor how the lights perform and what people think about their effectiveness.

More than 500,000 people take to two wheels every day in London, but worries about personal safety still remain the biggest hindrance to more people taking up cycling more regularly.

Santander’s partnership with Blaze will hopefully address on-going safety concerns and help reduce cycling accidents by making hire bike riders more visible to other road users at night.

Although any initiative to help address the danger of blind spots and reduce the number of collisions between cyclists and vehicles is commendable, our cycling accident lawyers would like to see more being done about cycling infrastructure in our cities particularly in regard to segregated cycle lanes.

Paul Kitson is a keen cyclist and Slater and Gordon’s Principal Lawyer for the CTC, the UK’s national cycling charity.

For a free consultation or to claim compensation for cycling accident injuries, call our specialist Cycling Accident Solicitors 24/7 on freephone 0808 175 8105 or contact us online and we will call you.

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