V2-Pedestrian Tech Launch Aims to Save 1M Lives

Vehicle-to-pedestrian communication technology has been launched claiming the potential to save one million lives a year currently taken in global road traffic accidents.

North American technology company, !important Safety Technologies, is claiming a world’s first with its V2P technology that predicts and prevents accidents between vehicles and vulnerable road users. The technology is already operational phone-to-phone and the company now aims to integrate it into the safety systems of the next generation of autonomous cars, trucks, buses, and commercial utility vehicles.

It points to the need for the technology citing Institut Français des Sciences et Techniques des Réseaux de l’Aménagement et des Transportes (IFSTTAR) research that 65% of the World Health Organization estimated 1.3 million traffic fatalities globally happen when the vehicle’s own cameras, radar and LiDAR systems cannot work as a result of obstructed views, poor visibility, darkness etc. The company’s app can be downloaded to a smartphone and uses its GNSS coordinates to create a virtual safety shield around the vulnerable pedestrian, cyclist, or motorcyclist.

Currently the user’s iOS or Android device communicates the anonymous data with the driver’s cell phone via the 4G or 5G networks, with wi-fi transmission under development. If the user is about to unintentionally walk onto a road, the driver’s cell phone is alerted to the impending hazard. The next step is to integrate the data feed into the on-board safety systems of any vehicle, although targeting autonomous vehicles, alerting the vehicle and automatically applying the brakes if necessary.

Chief executive officer of !important Safety Technologies, Bastien Beauchamp, said: “With our App, and its data fed, pedestrians and cyclists can protect themselves, and car companies can save lives. As a result, the !important App could have the same societal benefit as the invention of the original safety belt did in 1959 and my ambition is that every new car should have our technology fitted, helping us to save another million lives within 10 years.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in Europe. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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