Innovations ranging from fatigue monitoring, specialised lighting and artificial intelligence to be tested
Cutting-edge technologies are to be trialled on buses this year as part of the TfL Bus Safety Innovation Challenge.
The challenge pairs bus operators with innovative developers to come up with solutions to road danger that could complement TfL's Bus Safety Standard.
Over the past decade the number of people killed or seriously injured as a result of a collision involving a bus or coach has decreased by 54%, but the Mayor and TfL recognise that much more needs to be done to eliminate fatalities and serious injuries altogether and achieve Vision Zero.
The Bus Safety Innovation Challenge has an important role to play in this. The five successful applications for the fund are:
- A tool that calculates the risk of fatigue in real time
- Vulnerable road user intent prediction software that analyses people walking or cycling near a bus, anticipates their behaviour and alerts the driver
- A video-based driver safety coaching programme that uses clips of actual events so that everyone can learn from them
- A lighting system that illuminates areas of greater risk around buses to other road users, comes on and off automatically in slow-speed circumstances and that flashes to indicate when a bus is turning
- A pedestrian & cyclist detection and driver alert system that detects vulnerable road users faster than a human can
TfL will support these trials by funding specialist independent analysis. This means that robust evidence will be produced to test the effectiveness of each product in reducing casualties.
TfL would then explore how to introduce any of the successful innovations into its Bus Safety Standard.
Claire Mann, Director of Bus Operations at TfL, said: 'We're determined to eliminate death and serious injury from our roads, but we know that we can't do it alone.
'Our Bus Safety Standard is resulting in safer buses arriving in London this year, and this fund will harness the power of innovators - ensuring it complements our standard - helping to make deaths and serious injuries on our roads a thing of the past.'
In 2017, a £500,000 innovation fund was split between six projects including Abellio's trial of an advanced collision warning system which won Most Innovative Transport Project at the 2019 London Transport Awards.
Notes to editors
- Last month TfL published world-first bus driver fatigue research and set out a range of measures that will improve road safety
- TfL's Bus Safety Programme includes ten key work streams:
- A Bus Safety Standard, which requires additional and enhanced safety requirements for buses such as speed-limiting technology and automatic braking
- Increased emphasis on safety in the management of bus contracts
- New safety training focused on vulnerable road users for all London's 25,000 bus drivers
- Improved quality, consistency and analysis of bus collision investigations
- Greater transparency on bus collision data and investigations
- Reduced slips, trips and falls on buses
- Managed risk of fatigue among bus drivers
- Support for bus operators trials of new ideas to improve safety
- Collaborative safety improvements, including operators, the Met Police and the Confidential Incident Reporting Analysis System for Transport
- Continued use of the Sarah Hope Line, the UK's first Incident Support Service for those affected by fatal or serious injuries on the transport network
- Abellio will trial the Datik fatigue monitoring tool
- Arriva will trial the Humanising Autonomy vulnerable road user intent prediction software
- CT Plus will trial the Lytx Video-based driver safety coaching programme
- Metroline will trial the JBDL lighting system to illuminate area by the side of buses
- Stagecoach will trial the Fusion Processing pedestrian & cyclist detection and driver alert system