As cities become increasingly congested, smart city technology could increase safety for vulnerable road users such as cyclists and pedestrians.
A recent report from ATG Access, a company that supplies bollards, vehicle barriers and road blockers, explores the urbanisation problems in the UK which could be addressed through the implementation of smart city technology, Intelligent Transport reports.
More than half (56%) of people surveyed for the report believe that smart city measures would make the roads safer for cyclists, while two-thirds (66%) say that pedestrian safety and security would be improved by smart city measures being implemented in their local area.
Asked which smart traffic solutions they would be in favour of, 40% supported the idea of dedicated bus and cycle lanes in busy periods. These could be enabled by smart barriers that extend and retract according to traffic density, helping to reduce accidents and congestion.
Meanwhile, nearly half (47%) of respondents would like to see the use of strategically placed smart road sensors which can monitor congestion and detect accidents and other hazards, such as ice forming on the roads, and then alert drivers.
Responsive smart barriers and traffic lights could also help to minimise the risk to road users in the event of a security incident, Intelligent Transport explains. Such technology can help manage the flow of cars, cyclists and pedestrians throughout the incident, allowing better access for emergency services.
Gavin Hepburn, managing director at ATG Access, said that with tens of thousands of cyclists injured in road accidents every year it’s vital to start exploring new, more sophisticated methods of improving the UK’s transport infrastructure.
“The strategic implementation of smart city measures could help to greatly increase the safety of cyclists, pedestrians and drivers, while also making it more appealing for greater numbers of people to walk or cycle, which will be crucial if we are to achieve a more sustainable future,” he concluded.