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‘Smart Jacket’ shines a light on the future of bike safety

The future of New Zealand bike safety is looking brighter thanks to the introduction of Vodafone’s Smart Jacket, a mobile technology innovation designed to keep cyclists safer at night.

The jacket contains 300 built-in LED lights on its back and arms that are constantly illuminated and changing to show the cyclists next move.

The future of New Zealand bike safety is looking brighter thanks to the introduction of Vodafone’s Smart Jacket, a mobile technology innovation designed to keep cyclists safer at night.

The Smart Jacket connects to the cyclist’s smart phone via an app where they have programmed their chosen travel route. The app then shares route information with the jacket which communicates directions to both the cyclist and surrounding traffic.

The jacket contains 300 built-in LED lights on its back and arms that are constantly illuminated and changing to show the cyclists next move.

Although the jacket is only in its prototype stage, it is intended to help keep New Zealand cyclists safer at night. Comedian and cycling advocate Jon Bridges, who has teamed up with Vodafone to demonstarte the jacket together with BMX cyclist Sarah Walker, said anything that boosts safety and improves communication between cars and bikes is a good thing.

“If we could ease that perception that cycling is dangerous then we will all be better off, and one good way is to have things that make it safer – like cool fun jackets that hook up to your phone. It is exciting to know that innovations like the Smart Jacket could soon become a part of our daily lives,” he says.

The concern around night time cycling followed the Ministry of Transport’s 2015 Cyclist Crash Report showing cyclists have a high risk of having an accident after dark, especially during peak hour traffic.

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