E-scooter firm launches ‘Pedestrian Defense’

Electric Vehicles

Superpedestrian, the MIT spin-off engineering firm behind LINK has unveiled a breakthrough active safety system dubbed “Pedestrian Defense” as a 3-year-old is left with life-changing injuries from an accident involving an e-scooter in South London. 

The new system doesn’t just detect unsafe behaviours like riding on the pavement, but puts a stop to them in real time in order to prevent serious injuries, claims Superpedestrian.

The safety breakthrough is made possible through the acquisition of Navmatic, and the application of its patented Super Fusion technology, which combines multiple sources of real-time vehicle dynamics data to yield the most accurate, practical and reliable fleet positioning and vehicle control available today. Superpedestrian finalized the acquisition of Navmatic, a startup focused on micromobility safety, in June.

Superpedestrian’s new Pedestrian Defense capabilities will resolve deeply ingrained challenges in micromobility that have led many cities to restrict, sanction and even ban shared e-scooters.

By integrating Navmatic’s Super Fusion technology into Superpedestrian’s existing Vehicle Intelligence (VI) platform, Pedestrian Defense was born to ensure that unsafe behaviors like sidewalk riding, wrong-way riding, aggressive swerving and repeated hard braking are detected, then immediately corrected by slowing or safely stopping the scooter.

Pedestrian Defense is billed as a unique system which makes Superpedestrian the only micromobility provider that can reliably detect and correct unsafe rider behavior in real time, and at scale across an entire fleet – see YouTube video above.

The new technology integration also allows Superpedestrian to translate sensor data into other interventions, from direct notifications and incentives for riders, to comprehensive dashboards for policymakers that show safety trends and illustrate locations prone to unsafe behavior or increased chance of a crash.

Meanwhile, a  three-year-old girl has been left with “life-changing” injuries following a collision with an e-scooter in south London. She was in Myatt’s Field Park, Lambeth, with her family when she was struck at about 20.30 BST on Monday, police said.

The Met Police said the young man on the e-scooter stopped to say sorry.

She was in a stable condition but her injuries had been assessed as life-changing, the police said. Det Insp Lucie Card said: “A little girl has been left in a serious condition after this collision and her family are, of course, very distressed.

Chris Price
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