Volvo Is Looking Out for Cyclists’ Safety

As a major player of the SUV and truck market, Volvo needs no introduction. However, this company is not all about motors that bring in the profit. Apart from meeting the safety standards for the drivers’ safety, this Swedish giant is also investing majorly in ensuring road safety for all cyclists. In an industry obsessed with bottom-line and turnovers, this comes as a pleasant surprise. They are researching on the potential outcome of a very common scenario- a crash between a car and a bike, and how effectively the cyclist’s helmet holds up against the impact. 

What many car drivers tend to forget is that cyclists also pay their taxes and thus are equally entitled to the roads as are car owners. Naturally, the sensitivity towards them while driving is less than expected. Couple this withy the lack of safety equipment like bumpers, airbags, or a steel body and chassis on cycles, and you have the recipe for the usual traffic accidents. Volvo has teamed up with POC to address this scenario. This research aims to gather data about car and cycle collisions and use it to develop safer helmets and biking gear. They are even looking at incorporating this data into some solutions for introducing safety features in cycles.

This study was timed perfectly, in the wake of the alarming statistics. According to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, over 1,000 bicyclists died in 2015, and there were 467,000 bicycle-related injuries in the same timeframe. More troubling are the results of a study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in the same year. The data shows a declining number in overall bicycle accidents, but the grim twist to this is that fatalities had increased.
From the viewpoint of a synergistic partnership, Volvo made the right decision in choosing POC, given that the latter has quite some quality experience in this field along with sixty international awards for safety, innovation, and design. Other partners on board this project are also big names in their own right, like KTH Royal Institute of Technology, MIPS, and Autoliv.

POC’s method of testing includes crashing dummy heads wearing POC bike helmets against Volvo cars from different angles, at different speeds. The results of impact on these heads will be used to analyse for solutions and apply for necessary certifications.
While these are essential for legal compliances, this dream combination is willing to go over and beyond the mere norms to develop the best and the most innovative solutions. Given how altruistic the whole project is, we are not surprised.

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