Safety advice for cycling season

The last decade has seen a huge rise in the numbers of people cycling for sport and leisure. In England, almost five million people cycle for leisure at least twice a month – many of them inspired by the successes of British athletes in recent Olympic and Paralympic Games.

But as the Tour de France begins this month and cycling fever hits all over again, it’s important to remember the responsibilities of both cyclists and drivers travelling on our public roads.

HGVs and cyclists – who’s to blame for accidents?

HGVs present a particular threat to cyclists, with the key danger area being junctions and roundabouts in built-up areas. In London, around 20% of cyclist fatalities involve an HGV, often when the larger vehicle is turning left at a junction. Nationally, about one quarter of accidents resulting in serious injury to a cyclist involve an HGV, bus or coach ‘passing too close’ to the rider.

There is frequent debate over who is responsible for these collisions, with lorry drivers arguing that cyclists should never cycle up on their left side – an area of the vehicle that is particularly vulnerable to blind spots. Cyclists claim that HGV drivers should be more vigilant and respectful of others on the road.

Clearly it’s a complex area and blame cannot be attached to one group over another, since each accident will have a different cause. What is evident, however, is that the blind spots on large commercial vehicles present a danger that must never be underestimated.

Brigade Electronics – eliminating blind spots

Upgrading HGVs, coaches and buses with the latest safety technology can go a long way towards eliminating those potentially deadly blind spots. We’re proud to be a global market-leader in pioneering systems that warn and assist the driver whilst protecting others on the road.

Mirrors and single-view cameras have their place, but for a complete surround view of the danger zone around a vehicle, Brigade’s Backeye®360 is unbeatable. It’s an intelligent 360 vehicle camera system designed to assist low-speed manoeuvring by providing the driver with a ‘bird’s eye’ surround view of the vehicle in real time. Four ultra wide-angle cameras are mounted on the front, rear and sides of the vehicle. The four live images are simultaneously sent to an electronic control unit where they are instantly combined and delivered to the driver’s in-cab monitor in the form of a single, smooth real-time image.

Footage from vehicle-mounted cameras can also be captured by our MDR digital recording systems, helping to provide invaluable evidence in the event of genuine accidents or false claims.

As cyclists take to the roads across the UK and Europe this summer, is your commercial fleet doing all it can to minimise the risk of collisions? Why not contact us for more information on Backeye®360 , or any of the products in our extensive range. We’d be delighted to work with you to help make our roads safer for all users.