Bike-Friendly Trucks? How Better Truck Design Can Save Bikers' Lives

Posted by Adele Peters

When a car hits a bike, one of the most common reasons cited by a driver is that they just didn't see the biker. It's even more of a problem for trucks. In London, even though large trucks make up just 5 percent of the traffic on the road, they cause over half of all cycling deaths. The London Cycling Campaign is trying to help solve the problem through better design.

The Safer Urban Lorry, designed as inspiration for trucks used in the construction industry, includes much bigger windows, lower seats, and a camera system that gives a 360-degree view, all to give the driver a better view of bikers—or pedestrians—on the road. The truck design also has sideguards and low bumpers that are intended to prevent bikers from being dragged underneath the wheels if they fall. 

London has a network of bike "superhighways," but they aren't always safe, and unless bikers have a full network of protected bike lanes in a city (or trucks can somehow be designed out of the transportation system), ideas like this make a lot of sense. London's garbage trucks already have a similar design—New York City Department of Sanitation, are you listening?

This post is part of the GOOD community's 50 Building Blocks of Citizenship—weekly steps to being an active, engaged global citizen. This week: Take An Alternate Route. Follow along and join the conversation at and on Twitter at #goodcitizen.

Image courtesy of the London Cycling Campaign