When cycling at night, visibility is all-important, so for those looking to stand out, the new Lumos helmet with built in indicator lights and an automatic brake light, could become an essential.
The invention of Eu-wen Ding and Jeff Chen, who met at a weekend hackathon, the helmet is the result of ten months’ work.
The pair decided that it was easier for many cyclists to pick up their helmet when they ride than lights that have to remember lights every time.
The Lumos comes with a handlebar control to toggle the left and right indicators, which work via RF signal, and the brake light at the back of the helmet automatically comes on when you decelerate.
There are also permanently on LEDs on the front, and a single charge should last up to a week on average use (30 minutes per day); recharging is via micro-USB.
The helmet has already doubled its funding request on Kickstarter where a prototype comes in at $85 (a 50% discount on the expected eventual retail price).
It has passed the impact tests known as CPSC in the United States (CPSC 16 CFR Part 1203) and EN1078 in Europe - and will be ready for shipping next April.
The makers say: “Each year over 49,000 people get seriously injured while cycling, and over 700 die in the United States alone; a large number of them as a result of a collision with a motorist.
“As cyclists ourselves we have had many experiences when we felt invisible to people around us, and unsafe.
“We tried more lights, reflectors, and jackets, but hated how cumbersome it made our bike ride. Riding a bike should give you a sense of freedom. You shouldn't need to go through a checklist before you ride.
“Our hope is that Lumos makes it easier for cyclists to stay safe while still keeping that sense of freedom that comes with riding your bike.
“More than that, we hope that Lumos will play a role in the movement for better cyclist safety by helping motorist and non-motorist share the road more effectively and graciously, and so make cycling safer and a more viable option for more people to pick up.”