Sat-nav software could save cyclists’ lives

12.00 | 22 April 2013 | | 2 comments

A satellite navigation system that alerts HGV drivers in London to the risk of a collision with cyclists has been developed in an attempt to save lives.

The £250 device, endorsed by London’s mayor Boris Johnson and the London Road Safety Council (LRSC), is believed to be the first in-cab system with built-in alerts for bikes.

The software developer Navevo has programmed in 100 hotspots in London, using official data provided to them by Transport for London (TfL). TfL defines the hotspots as areas where large numbers of HGVs and cyclists converge, such as Parliament Square, Euston Road, Elephant & Castle and Hyde Park Corner.

HGV drivers will be alerted by an audible alarm and pop-up icon on the satnav screen when they enter one of the “warning zones”, which are each 50 metres in radius.

TfL figures show that 28 cyclists have been killed in collisions with HGVs in London since 2009. The latest was climate change scientist Dr Katharine Giles who was hit by a tipper truck as she cycled to work. Her death led to Boris Johnson warning that HGVs could be banned from central London at certain times of day.

James Parker, London Road Safety Council (LRSC) spokesman, said: “Many of our road safety officer members are working hard alongside the police to educate cyclists about lorry drivers’ blind spots.

“The Exchanging Places programme, where cyclists sit in the driver’s seat to appreciate the limited view in an HGV, is effective, while others are teaching fleet drivers how it is for cyclists via cycle training programmes.

“This new tool is to be welcomed and will help to raise driver awareness and in turn make things safer for cyclists.”

For more information contact LRSC on:


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    Areas with high cyclist numbers aren’t really the problem. In these places cyclists are obvious. It’s the lone cyclists that drivers need to look out for as well.

    Steve, Merseyside
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    Sounds like a good idea. The more things like this the better. I was standing next to a lorry the other day that was indicating to turn left and it was making a loud ‘this vehicle is turning left’ announcement. Why isn’t this on all HGV’s that come in to London?

    Gary, London
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