System aims to reduce chance of cyclist injuries

City of York buses to use Cycle Alert

The Cycle Alert System is being fitted on University of York Unibuses and on the bikes of students.

The University of York, City of York Council and Transdev Unibus worked with Cycle Alert to launch the programme – Cycle Alert is designed to tackle the fact that a disproportionate amount of accidents and deaths for cyclists occur with HGVs and larger vehicles.

Cycle Alert tracks only cyclists up to two metres in proximity, eliminating the ‘white noise’ issue of some existing systems, indicating the presence of any object in the vicinity. The system does not just alert drivers to a potential risk in areas frequented by cyclists – it facilitates a direct warning from a cyclist straight to the vehicle driver.

Fiona Macey, travel plan coordinator at the University of York said: “We are thrilled to be working in partnership with Transdev Unibus and the City of York Council to be the first UK city to pioneer the use of Cycle Alert on our University bus fleet. The University is committed to promoting sustainable modes of travel and Cycle Alert will be a huge benefit to our cyclists and city wide.”

The system has three elements: a tag that is fitted to the bicycle (or worn by a cyclist on their person or helmet),
sensors that are fitted to the HGV or other vehicle, and a cab-mounted device to alert the driver. The three units
work in sync to form a communication network between all parties, alerting the driver – with maximum advance notice – of a cyclist in proximity.

The in-cab receiver is designed to create minimal distraction for the driver, with a simple and audible ‘cyclist’ warning and a flashing light that indicates where the cyclist or cyclists are positioned near or around
the vehicle. This allows the driver to react instantly and actively avoid any potential collisions.

Transport for London has been testing another cyclist/HGV safety device, more on that here.

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