Edinburgh rolls out cycle-safety kit on waste fleet

City of Edinburgh council has upgraded its waste fleet with cycle safety equipment with a view to preventing collisions between cyclists and lorries.

Edinburgh is to reduce the number of crew members allowed in the cabs of RCVs to two

The local authority has integrated Cyclear technology into its vehicles, which comprises an illuminated sign that lights up to alert anyone travelling towards a lorry when it is turning left, and a speaker announcing the manoeuvre for additional warning.

Edinburgh council waste vehicles now feature technology to warn drivers when cyclists are nearby
Edinburgh council waste vehicles now feature technology to warn drivers when cyclists are nearby

Sensors on the side of the vehicle also detect when a cyclist travels alongside it, alerting the driver with an audible message. The system will operate and detect a cyclist if they undertake a lorry, should the illuminated sign not be activated.

To launch the technology, volunteers from the Spokes cycle campaign, Cycling Scotland and Heriot-Heriot-Watt University, along with junior road safety officers from Bonaly, St Cuthbert’s, St Mary’s, Nether Currie and Newcraighall primary schools, were on hand to test the system.

Safety

Edinburgh council’s transport convener, councillor Lesley Hinds, said: “Cycle safety is of utmost importance to the council so it makes absolute sense to equip our own vehicles with technology that minimises risk for all road users.

“Promoting cycling as an accessible mode of transport is a key priority in Edinburgh, and developments like this are central to creating a safe and attractive atmosphere for new and experienced cyclists.”

Cyclear

Edinburgh is the latest council to incorporate the technology into its fleet, with Cyclear features already fitted to vehicles in City of London, Luton, Guildford, Midlothain councils and to Serco’s collection fleet in the London borough of Havering (see letsrecycle.com story).

It comes as Edinburgh rolls out its own cycle safety campaign to coincide with Mayor of London Boris Johnson’s policy to ban all heavy goods vehicles of a certain size from the capital if they are not fitted with sideguards from September (see letsrecycle.com story).

In 2014, Edinburgh council partnered with Cycling Scotland to introduce Drive Awareness training for drivers of HGVs, aiming to make them more aware of the dangers facing cyclists on the roads.

The council is now looking for feedback from cyclists who have encountered their refuse lorries fitted with Cyclear technology.

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