New York bike-sharing programme Citi Bike is installing Blaze Laserlights in 250 of its bikes this winter, announced the two companies yesterday. This innovative bike safety technology is a City of Future selected project.
Blaze Laserlight projects a green bike-shaped image ahead of riders to increase their footprint on the road. By doing this, the laser alerts drivers and other road users to riders’ presence and makes them visible.
After an experiment in London using the same lights, a pilot programme will start in New York this winter. The initiative aims to make Citi Bike riders more visible to drivers and pedestrians, improving safety on the road for everyone.
Previous research on the Laserlight on the London’s bike share fleet revealed that a cyclist with a Laserlight at night is even more visible than a cyclist in daytime.
The vast majority of London bus drivers surveyed said the light made it easier to notice and react to cyclists at night, while 75 per cent of cyclists felt more confident cycling with a Laserlight, states Citi Bike in a press release.
The companies also hope that the initiative will grow ridership among women, whom studies have shown are more likely to ride in safer traffic environments with features like protected bike lanes and one-way streets. Results in London indicated that this outcome is likely, they say.
75 per cent of cyclists felt more confident cycling with a Laserlight, according to a London’s bike share fleet survey
“By incorporating Blaze’s lights into the bike, we aim to keep New Yorkers on foot, behind the wheel and riding a Citi Bike safer and to improve the rider experience overall so that people of all backgrounds are inspired to try New York City’s popular bike share program,” said Jay Walder, President & CEO of Motivate, operators of the Citi Bike programme.
Coming to New York this winter, Blaze pilot will introduce some technical developments. “We have been working with Motivate for over a year to develop a brand new product that brings our innovative projection technology to the streets of New York,” said Emily Brooke, Founder and CEO of Blaze. “It also includes improved front lighting and connectivity, making cycling with a Citi Bike even safer and more enjoyable.”