Can a Bike Helmet Tell You When That Volvo is Getting Too Close?

Bicycle helmets help reduce the risk of injuries such as traumatic brain injuries, but is it possible for a bike helmet to be proactive and help reduce the risk of an accident itself?

Bike use in urban environments has increased, but unfortunately so has the number of bicyclist fatalities. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the number of pedalcyclists killed in 2012 saw a 6 percent increase over the number of corresponding fatalities in 2011. (Pedalcyclists refers to riders of two-wheeled vehicles, as well as tricycles and unicycles, that are powered solely by pedals.)

Unfortunately, here at Greening Law, we represent too many families whose lives have been permanently altered by a disability, injury or death to their loved one who was riding a bicycle. Seven hundred and twenty-six pedalcyclists were killed in 2012 as a result of motor vehicle accidents, and a further 49,000 were injured. Sixty-nine percent of these accidents occurred in urban areas, and 60 percent occurred at non-intersections. The average age of those killed in 2012 was 43, continuing the trend of a steady increase in age of such fatalities over the past ten years.

A new technological advance in bike helmets may, however, help to reduce the potential for bicycle-motor vehicle collisions. Bloomberg recently reported on a new bike helmet being developed by car manufacturer Volvo which has the ability to tell both a driver and a bicyclist if the Volvo the driver is driving comes too close to the bicycle.

The bike helmet uses technology that’s already built into Volvo’s new XC-90. On the biker’s side, the helmet works with apps which use GPS tracking technology. The helmet is still in concept phase and requires further testing before it can be released. Even more importantly, for the helmet to be effective, Volvo will need to make the technology available to other car manufacturers. Fortunately for bicyclists, Volvo has a history of giving away safety innovations.

After a car accident, an experienced attorney is one of the few people who will advocate for your best interests. Robert Greening is the principal attorney at Greening Law, P.C. He has dedicated his 24 years of practice to the litigation of wrongful death and serious injury cases. If you have any questions, message us or call us at 972-934-8900.