The Bristol-based engineering firm that brought state of the art technology to the city’s buses to help reduce cyclist casualties has won a contract with the Welsh Government to help improve safety for motorcyclists.
Fusion Processing will adapt its CycleEye technology to be used on three static locations to help detect motorcycles approaching a junction and warn other motorists of their proximity so as to avoid a collision.
Trial locations will likely be T-junctions or crossroads in Wales, where there is known to be a risk to motorcyclists and casualties have been incurred in the past.
The system combines radar and camera to reliably detect motorcyclists against a backdrop of clutter and other vehicles. It can identify the type of vehicle, its range and speed.
Using this information, drivers approaching the junction or waiting to turn can be informed of the motorcyclist’s proximity and speed via an electronic sign.
Jim Hutchinson, founder and CEO of Fusion Processing, said: “It is well documented that drivers actively looking for cyclists and motorcyclists are more likely to see them.
“Active electronic signage has also been shown to have a positive effect on motorists’ behaviour, so we anticipate that this system, which combines these two factors, should have a positive effect on bringing down the numbers of collisions.
“We’re really pleased the Welsh Government has recognised the benefits of our CycleEye technology and we look forward to getting the trial sites underway so that we can truly assess the benefits.”
Read more: CycleEye is just one of Bristol's many innovations. Here are six.
Last year, Fusion completed a feasibility study for this technology for the Welsh Government. This new trial will add further weight to this and provide a means to assess driver response. Following a successful trial, Fusion expects to be able to make available a fully productionised product within six months.
The innovative company is based at the Bristol SETsquared Centre at Engine Shed, a centre of excellence for high-tech and digital businesses.
Engine Shed director Nick Sturge, himself a keen motorcyclist, said: “This is another great coup for Fusion Processing – to apply their world class technology to a very real problem on our roads.
“Unfortunately, collisions involving motorcycles have not fallen as much as we would like and so this will be an important step forward in this area. Congratulations to Fusion for beating off stiff competition on this contract.”