London’s entire fleet of Boris bikes -- you know, those bulky, Santander-emblazoned two-wheelers that looked better in the Barclays colour scheme -- is to be fitted with green laser lights, in order to help keep riders safe on the streets. Created by Blaze, the special lights beam a green cyclist symbol onto the road six metres in front of riders, making cyclists visible to pedestrians and drivers.
250 Blaze-fitted Santander bikes were involved in a test run earlier this year, and TfL says it received positive feedback from members of the public. In a survey of cyclists who'd been trialling the bikes that were already fitted with the laser lights, TfL says that around 75% said that they felt more confident, and just under half said they'd be more likely to use Boris bikes after dark if they had laser lights installed. The Blaze lights will come on automatically at night, to ensure as little energy wastage as possible.
TfL says all 11,500 bikes will be upgraded in early 2016, with Santander splashing out £768,000 on the scheme and TfL putting forward £92,000.