London couriers are to get cycling airbags to improve safety.
‘Absolutely’, one of the oldest courier companies in the UK, has announced a new safety initiative in collaboration with ‘Hövding’, the airbag for cyclists in a first-of-its-kind partnership to make the booming London industry safer.
With couriers spending up to ten hours a day cycling on the busy streets of London, safety is a clear priority.
However, many professional couriers shun helmets because they are uncomfortable to wear for long periods of time and are perceived to be “useless” in the event of an accident.
Recognising this, Absolutely has partnered with Hövding to provide a select number of its couriers with the world’s best head protection.
The roll-out of this innovative and proven safety product will enable Absolutely to further expand its safety measures for its push-bike couriers and increase their protection when delivering within the capital.
Wearing distinctive “Absolutely x Hövding” cycling jerseys along with their Hövding airbags, the Absolutely couriers will cycle around London for an initial three month trial starting today. The two companies hope this initiative will raise awareness of urban cycling safety in London.
Jeremy Thompson, Managing Director of Absolutely says: “We pride ourselves on our knowledge, experience and heritage as well as the safety of our people. Hövding is a good example of deploying technology in our business for the benefit of our cycle couriers and leading the way in London.
“We very much hope to see this world leading technology being deployed not only within our business but also throughout the UK to reduce injuries and fatalities. According to TFL’s 2015 report released in June 2016, there were 387 serious cyclist injuries in London, of which nine were fatalities.
“Ensuring our couriers have adequate protection is of paramount importance to us and following our partnership with Hövding, we intend to lead the field.”
Fredrik Carling, CEO of Hövding, added: “Hövding is always looking for opportunities to partner up with other forward-thinking companies that encourage and promote cycling safety.
“Absolutely is a tremendous ambassador for our product and we are proud to be a part of an initiative that will improve the safety of hard-working couriers. Additionally, we hope that by having a successful partnership we can effectively introduce our product and drastically reduce the number of road deaths in the UK.”
At the end of 2016, Stanford University researchers found that the thickness and stiffness of the Hövding airbag is “near perfect” in terms of protecting against concussion and head injuries caused by an accident. Moreover, the study proved the Hövding delivers eight times better protection against the risk of concussion compared with that of a traditional cycling helmet.
Packed with advanced technology and millions of sensors, the Hövding is worn around the neck like a collar and is able to read a cyclist’s body movements at 200 times per second.
In an event of an accident, the airbag is triggered by changes in a cyclist’s body movement patterns and fully inflates in 0.1 seconds, providing full protection and the best shock absorption, before impact. Furthermore, Hövding protects nearly all of the head, while leaving the field of vision open.
The company is aware of over 800 accidents in four years where Hövding has potentially saved a cyclist’s life.