31 Jan
Auto-Inflating Vest Protects Cyclists Auto-Inflating Vest Protects Cyclists

Auto-Inflating Vest Protects Cyclists

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Billed as "the first wearable airbag vest that protects cyclists in their daily ride", B'safe provides protection to a rider's back, neck, and thorax.

That's particularly important, given that 40% of cyclists who receive serious injuries were affected in the thorax, while 25% suffered injuries affecting the spinal area. Since there's little protection available to cyclists looking to guard those areas, the inflatable B'safe should especially appeal to regular cyclists, like those who commute for work. This group is estimated at just under a million persons in the U.S. In Europe, it's believed that 7% of active citizens arrive at work everyday by bicycle.

None of those folks want to ride their bikes to work looking like a top-heavy version of the Michelin Man. The B'safe works by staying deflated -- essentially the same as an ordinary reflective vest -- until and unless a smart algorithm senses the prospect of an accident.

The system, which consists of the vest and a sensor module placed under the bike's saddle, analyzes motion in context. An upcoming accident can be detected in 60 milliseconds, triggering an airbag system in the vest that can inflate in 80 milliseconds. The cyclist is thus protected prior to impact, with the shock to the upper body being absorbed by the airbag.

The ergonomically designed device contains one sensor and one cartridge, which is integrated into the vest, and the aforementioned sensor under the seat. It is available in four sizes, two colors, and includes water repellant protection.

The included CO2 cartridge can be changed out after the vest has been deployed, allowing the system to be reused.

A Kickstarter campaign is expected to launch in April 2019.

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Read 1354 times Last modified on Thursday, 31 January 2019 07:51
Jim Lillie

Jim began writing for newspapers and designing for publishing companies at a time when both industries were just beginning to make the switch from manual to digital platforms. Jim lives in Boulder, Colorado with his teenage son.

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