Cyclists have to be wary of everything in big cities, even robotic cars. To help its sharing-service users, Citi Bike in New York is outfitting 250 bicycles with "Laserlight" safety lights from UK company Blaze. They project a bright green bicycle outline 20 feet ahead, effectively giving you a personal bike lane symbol. That helps alert motorists, pedestrians and other cyclists of your presence 30 percent more often than without them, Blaze says.
According to the New York Post, the 250 lights are just a pilot program, due to end mid-March. By the end of the year, however, all 6,000 bikes will be equipped with the lights. "By incorporating Blaze's lights into the bikes, we aim to keep New Yorkers on foot, behind the wheel and riding a Citi Bike safer," Citi Bike operator Motivate's CEO told the Post.
It's not the first time the tech has been tried. In London, UK, the "Boris Bikes" service did an identical trial in 2015, and ended up installing Blaze Laserlights on all 11,500 of its Santander bikes. A study by London's mass transportation service found that Laserlights made them up to 30 percent more visible to trucks, buses and vans. The units retail to consumers in the US for $200, or £125 in the UK.