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19 Auto, Bike & Tech Companies Form Coalition for Cyclist Safety with V2X

Coalition for Cyclist Safety V2X communication strategy makes bikes and ebikes safer
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We all know that cyclists are vulnerable out on the road amongst giant steel boxes being piloted by ever-less-attentive drivers, so a Coalition for Cyclist Safety is pushing for smarter V2X Vehicle-to-Everything Communication to make everyone on foot or two wheels safer. Surely, only relying on technology isn’t the only way to protect bicyclists on the road, nor is putting the responsibility on cyclists to carry some electronic device to communicate their presence in the roadway. But opening communication amongst all road users sounds like a good strategy to making vulnerable road users safer….

Coalition for Cyclist Safety strategy for V2X communication

spoke C-V2X car to bicycle safety tech shown on dash of audi
photo by Tyler Benedict, c. Bikerumor

“According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, bicycles constitute one percent of all trips across the United States, but represent two percent of all traffic fatalities. More than 130,000 cyclists a year suffer injuries riding bicycles in U.S. traffic.

So, a collective of 19 leading companies in the auto, cycling & tech sectors are working together to try to “help reduce the risks facing cyclists and e-bike riders on North American roads“. This ‘Coalition for Cyclist Safety’ is strategizing how a smart V2X communication system can help improve the ‘digital visibility’ of cyclists and other ‘vulnerable road users’, at a time when more and more automobiles take advantage of electronic crash avoidance systems.

Coalition for Cyclist Safety V2X communication strategy makes bikes and ebikes safer, Audi
renderings c. Bosch

On the automotive side this North American coalition only includes Audi and the auto parts & accessories company Cariad. But hopefully, they’ll manage to get more onboard as the project develops. On the bike side, there’s an mix that leans heavily on the ebike side of things including: Accell (which includes Haibike, Winora, Ghost, Batavus, Koga, Lapierre, Raleigh & more), AT-Zweirad (aka Velo de Ville), BMC, Bosch eBike Systems, Gazelle, Shimano & Trek. The coalition is also actively inviting other companies to join in on the project. They can each out via email to: info@coalitionforcyclistsafety.org

An advisory committee overseeing the coalition includes key advocacy groups: ITS America, League of American Bicyclists, People for Bikes, and The Governors Highway Safety Association.

Bosch also specifically called out in their participation the need to “ensure that the bicycle and eBikes are also integrated in a future V2X ecosystem“.

Previous technology attempts to make cyclists safer

photo by Cory Benson, c. Bikerumor

This is certainly not the first we’ve heard of V2X helping cyclists be seen. Trek & Ford were working on the topic almost 6 years ago now. As were several other brand-specific approaches from Volvo & POC, Jaguar & Rover, QUT, Trek & Specialized & more.

spoke C-V2X communication technology diagram
c. Spoke Safety

In fact, last year we reported on another active Spoke Safety C-V2X project. That one incorporated many of the same partners as this new coalition.

Where this all goes from here is still very much up in the air. But it still looks like cycling industry manufacturers will need to incorporate this new C-V2X tech into new bikes & ebikes. At the same time, they should make it available as an accessory for existing bikes via smart lights, cycling computers, or even compact devices that could be incorporated for example underneath a water bottle cage.

We’ll certainly be keeping our eyes peeled for any development in increased rider safety. Whether that is on ebikes or good old regular bicycles.

More information and the full PR from Bosch is available here. While the Coalition works on setting up their own website.

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Klaster_1
Klaster_1
7 months ago

Previous technology attempts to make cyclists safer

Is it me or this has a connotation of “old approaches didn’t work, here’s a shiny new thing to get excited about”? This might not have been the intention, but that surely sounds like one.

As to the initiative, I’m not sure about it. It has a chance to pivot into mandatory requirements territory, making bicycles less affordable and hampering adoption, like the helmet laws. It might also become a thing lazy city administrations use to delay the construction of proper, safe by default infrastructure and public transport to reduce the amount of cars.

Voltaire sbastard
Voltaire sbastard
7 months ago
Reply to  Klaster_1

‘Vulnerable’ to engineers setting speed limits too high. ‘Vulnerable’ to vehicles incorporating forward and side blind spots. ‘Vulnerable’ to systematic lack of consistent operating space. ‘Vulnerable’ to underinvestment. ‘Vulnerable’ to deprioritisation. ‘Vulnerable’ to deregulation. ‘Vulnerable’ to victim blaming…. hmm, why don’t more people cycle? Works pretty well for car manufacturers to eliminate competition (* coughing from burning trams).

Why is it that without cars around cycling is a pretty safe thing to do, not so ‘vulnerable’ then…actually safer than being inactive.

V2x is a distraction, figuratively and potentially literally. Yet another tool for victim blamers. “How can they seriously ask for improved safety when they don’t even wear high vis noise emitting radar sensitive hyper beacons constantly transmitting their insurance and personal details”. Want to drive a multi-tonne car drunk without a licence, zero in car controls or regulatory requirements for that even thought interlocks have existed for decades.

Cycling and walking is more resilient than vulnerable, it’s the cars that are fragile and demand multi-billion life support to remain marginally competitive with urban cycling. ‘Congestion’ is fragility and nobody nowhere has out built it even when throwing good money after bad.

If we were serious about safety suv’s would be vulnerable to regulation.

Rage Against The Machine
Rage Against The Machine
7 months ago

***applause***

Rage Against The Machine
Rage Against The Machine
7 months ago

“…need to incorporate this new C-V2X tech into…”

If these systems can’t recognise a kid on an old junkyard bike without tech being added to that kid or bike, isn’t it failing? Failing anyone who doesn’t have enough money or know about the tech and failing to do much about increasing automotive domination of our streets. I understand basically what V2X is but it needs to work totally independently of other road users or what they have attached. Build the tech into the $30k vehicle not add things to the $50 bike, or dog, or old lady.

Am I missing something?

syborg
syborg
7 months ago

A perfect system to train drivers to be even less attentive. Also, if these systems ever get fielded initially there will be millions of legacy cars and bikes that are non-compliant. How many years would it take for a reasonable percentage of vehicles to be fielded with the technology?

Someone needs to do a cost/benefit analysis on these systems vs improving existing infrastructure and strict enforcement of existing laws.

Marc Smith
Marc Smith
6 months ago

Is this a joke ?

Marc Smith
Marc Smith
6 months ago

How about automakers stop making road behemoths ? For one. Pick up trucks are starting to show up in Europe, NOrth America is a gigantic highway of solo drivers in gigantic cars and we are reading about trinkets… as a driving aide. How about slow down and simply look in front of you…

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