A new product aimed at tackling accidents on the road has been launched by two Yorkshire companies to enhance cyclist and motorbike rider safety, at a time when commuters are being encouraged to get on their bikes rather than use public transport.
Every year there are thousands of collisions between lorries and vulnerable road users (VRUs) on UK roads. AirBar is an industry first and has been designed to reduce the number of incidents and save lives.
The product, AirBar Cyclesafe, designed by NuVech Solutions, has a worldwide patent and is the first vehicle‐mounted, retractable safety device to stop cyclists and bikers riding on the nearside of HGVs turning left at junctions.
The flexible membrane, which inflates under pressure when the driver indicates, keeps riders out of the driver’s blind spot, helping to increase visibility and protect VRUs in these high‐risk environments.
The left‐hand signal application launches this month, at a time when people are being advised to cycle to work, and when more lorries are on the road due to the Government’s focus on construction.
When an HGV driver indicates left, the soft membrane inflates at the nearside of the vehicle warning riders not to pass on the inside of the lorry and into the driver’s blind spot.
Simon Scaife, director at NuVech Solutions, said: “The AirBar creates a soft physical barrier that is visible to both passing traffic and vulnerable road users, meaning cyclists and motorbike riders can’t physically ride on the nearside of a lorry when the barrier is out.
“We’re committed to creating a safer environment for riders on the road now, more than ever, by investing in a solution that warns them not to enter a dangerous area and move into a driver’s blind spot.”
The AirBar is the result of a joint partnership between NuVech and luxury bed manufacturer, Harrison Spinks. Harrison Spinks will be installing the AirBars on its fleet of HGVs.