I love technology, especially when it saves lives, like seat belts, airbags, anti-lock brakes, and now, Volvo’s new cyclist and pedestrian detection system.
The Volvo Cyclist Detection system, which will soon be fitted to Volvo’s new models, scans the road ahead for bicyclists and automatically slams on the brakes if the car is about to strike a bicyclist.
The system was unveiled this month at the Geneva Auto Show in Switzerland, and it’s great news for bicyclists – and drivers who are too often distracted and impatient!
You can see the system in action on Yahoo! News.
Volvo will add the technology to all of its models by mid-May. It’s part of a safety campaign by the Swedish-Chinese automaker, which has a goal of ending fatal accidents in or around Volvos by 2020, according to Yahoo! News.
Volvo’s technology is based on a system it built into cars in 2010 that was designed to prevent pedestrian accidents. If it could detect and protect pedestrians, why not bicyclists?
Here is how it works: There is a radar unit behind the car’s grill, a camera in front of the interior rear-view mirror, and central processors. The radar signals the speed and location of the obstacles ahead, while the camera identifies potential cyclists, and both keep an electronic eye on moving objects, Yahoo! News says.
If the sensors believe the car is closing in on the cyclist too quickly, they will flash a warning light and pulse the brakes up to full power without the driver’s input.
“By covering more and more objects and situations, we reinforce our world-leading position within automotive safety. We keep moving towards our long-term vision to design cars that do not crash,” Doug Speck, Volvo’s Senior Vice President Marketing, Sales and Customer Service, told NBC News.
Volvo will begin offering its Pedestrian and Cyclist Protection on more than half of its current line-up, including the V40, S60, V60, XC60, V70, XC70 and S80 models, starting in mid-May, NBC News reported.
About 52,000 cyclists are injured each year, with 612 dying in 2010. A total of 4,280 pedestrians were killed in vehicle-related incidents in 2010 across the U.S., according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Another 70,000 were injured.
So the toll from pedestrian and bicycle accidents is steep. Bicyclists in Elmira, Corning and the Twin Tiers, would you feel safer if all cars had this technology, or do you think drivers will pay even less attention to bicyclists?
Please leave your answers and comments in the comment area below.