Airbag for cyclists unveiled
An alternative to a bicycle helmet was unveiled in Sweden today--a fabric collar with motion sensors that rapidly inflates into an air-filled cushion around the wearer's head after detecting rapid movement indicating an impact.
In this video, a crash dummy is hit by a car going about 12 miles an hour; the collar inflates in one-tenth of a second, forming a helmet around the dummy's head before it hits the car's hood.
The safety device, called a Hövding, could appeal to cyclists who are reluctant to wear a helmet because of its appearance, discomfort or concern about their hair.
It could also come in handy for users of Arlington and the District's Capital Bikeshare, which recommends wearing helmets but does not provide them. Users of the bikeshare program like the fact that after they drop off a bike, they are unencumbered by equipment; the collar, unlike a helmet, could be easily tucked into a bag.
It will go on sale in Sweden early next year, retailing for about $50.
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