Ealing wins international award for cycle safety system

Ealing Council has scooped two awards for its work to develop an innovative new lorry safety system which warns drivers when cyclists and pedestrians are likely to collide with a vehicle.

New cycle safety system trialled on lorry in Ealing

It won the Fleet Safety Analysis and Action category at road safety charity, Brake’s awards on Thursday, 1 October. In September, London won the award for best Innovative Transport City at the Transport Innovation Deployment for Europe (TIDE) event for Ealing Council’s cycle safety work.

Ealing developed the technology with the system’s manufacturers. Cycle Safety Shield is the first of its kind to use intelligent cameras to filter out inanimate objects, such as bus stops and fences, to monitor and detect only pedestrians, cyclists and motorbikes and eliminate blind spots 360 degrees around the vehicle. An alarm will only sound to the driver if a cyclist or pedestrian becomes too close to the vehicle.

Using Transport for London funding, the council is currently installing the Cycle Safety Shield System on all of its large goods vehicles. Its highways and recycling and waste contractors Murrill Construction and Amey are also rolling out the system on their vehicles.

This follows a trial of the system in 2013 and 2014 which showed that 15 potential collisions with cyclists had been avoided and driver behaviour had improved by 20 per cent. The trial also demonstrated that improved driving saved £1,000 in fuel costs on each vehicle per year.

Councillor Bassam Mahfouz, cabinet member for transport and environment said: “The Cycle Safety Shield is life-saving technology which is proving to be a game-changer in the field of road safety as it is recognised for the positive impact it can make.  With lorries being responsible for two-thirds of cycling deaths in London, this innovative piece of kit, installed on Ealing vehicles, makes such a positive difference and I am delighted and honoured that this has been recognised with awards from Brake and across Europe.”

Jon Guest, director of Cycle Safety Shield commented: “Ealing Council is setting a benchmark for road safety in London and its work fully complements the Mayor’s safer lorry scheme. We are very proud to be involved and the fact that the Cycle Safety Shield project is being recognised internationally is an amazing achievement and shows London is leading the way for innovation.”