Unless you live in London, you might not have a clue what a Santander Cycle is. These are bicycles that people needing to get around the city can rent from kiosks and pedal to their destination where they can be turned in at another kiosk. This week London Mayor Boris Johnson MP, TfL, and Santander UK have announced that all 11,500 Santander Cycles will be fitted with Blaze Laserlights.
The Blaze Laser light is a small laser projector device that is fitted to the handlebars of the bicycles. The projector then throws a green outline of a bicycle onto the pavement 6 meters in front of the bike to allow cars and pedestrians to see that the bike is coming before they actually see the bike.
The 11,500 Santander Cycles that are available will begin being fitted with the Blaze Laserlights starting in early 2016. The lights will be rolled out to the fleet over time and there is no indication of when the rollout will be completed.
The goal of the laserlights is to alert drivers of the approaching bikes and to give the bicyclist a larger footprint on the road. A trial was conducted with 250 cycles being fitted with the Laserlight and was met with positive feedback. Over half the people that used the cycles said they would prefer to use bikes with the Laserlight fitted at night.