Rear-view camera coming soon to help cyclists record accidents

Device can also be used in conjunction with bar-mounted monitor to let you know what's behind

by Simon_MacMichael   January 18, 2011  

Cerevellum Hindsight 30 unit on handlebars (picture- Cerevellum)

A designer in the United States has devised a rear-view camera that can be fitted to a bicycle’s seatpost and records footage on a continuous ten-second loop, potentially providing video evidence that could prove invaluable in the event of a collision. When used in conjunction with a handlebar-mounted monitor, it also acts in effect as a rear-view mirror for the cyclist.

Called the Cerevellum Hindsight 30, the camera has been developed over the past two years by Evan Solida of North Carolina through his company 6ix Design, and includes an accelerometer – similar to the motion-detecting software inside an Apple iPhone that governs the screen orientation – which when it detects unusual movement, such as that which happens in a collision, records the latest ten seconds of video then shuts down.

According to the product website, “With the Hindsight 30, you will always be able to know what is approaching from behind, whether a car or an opponent initiating a break-away,” although we’re pretty sure the UCI might have a word or two to say on that second point.

The camera housing, which can be attached to standard and aero seat posts, also incorporates a red rear LED light, which can be set to steady on, flashing, or off.

There’s also a front LED light on the monitor unit, which has a 3.5-inch transflective LCD screen which can be viewed in sunlight and also has a light for viewing in poor visibility.

Battery life is claimed to be 13 hours and the product will be shown at Eurobike this autumn.

While the camera's benefits in terms of potentially recording accidents are obvious, when it comes to acting as a replacement for bar or helmet mounted mirrors, or just a good, old-fashioned look over the shoulder, we do wonder however whether the screen itself might just provide too much of a distraction while you're out and about on the bike

Solida has also integrated the camera into the frame of a concept bike he has designed, called the Rael, which also incorporates a patented shifting and braking system that in effect sees the levers turned upside down, as featured on the website Bicycledesign.net.

Explaining the thinking behind the repositioning of the levers, Solida says: “When you’re riding on normal hoods, your index finger (longest and most powerful digit) is located near the pivot for the lever. That’s far from ideal. You can generate the most braking power by riding in the drops with your index finger near the tip of the lever blade, the farthest point from the pivot.

“I flipped things around so that you have the most modulation control while riding on the “hoods.” Also, the “drops” can be angled outward to the user’s discretion. One more benefit is that the “drops” are ergonomically shaped like a pistol grip, fantastic for tough sprints.”

 

18 user comments

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Thatd be useful. I wonder when we will see a garmin that can be plugged into this, thus everything can be recorded. Speed, position, route etc etc etc

relaxing

PzychotropicMac's picture

posted by PzychotropicMac [85 posts]
18th January 2011 - 13:26

1 Like

FFS, get a grip, just another company selling you more stuff that you don't need. What about the camera for the head on collision or the one for the side swipe? Maybe we should have a satellite beacon on our bikes and then military "spy" satellites could follow us and film out every move. Devil Angry

bikeandy61's picture

posted by bikeandy61 [441 posts]
18th January 2011 - 14:54

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rear end is where you're most likely to get hit from though. As I've said before what I'd like is a smartphone app that turns your phone camera into a speed camera - I'd even get a smartphone for one of them

Tony Farrelly's picture

posted by Tony Farrelly [4178 posts]
18th January 2011 - 15:04

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Sorry but what exactly would be the point of that? So you can fall off your bike while you try to take the speed of a car that has overtaken you?

I realise from reading about cycle deaths that a lot seem to happen when a bike is rear ended. However in my 25 years of adult cycling I have been hit by cars 4 times. Every single one of those was by cars pulling out across my path. So my personal experience calls in to question your statistic.

I use quite a lot of technology but I feel that we'd ALL be a lot safer if we concentrated on the primary activity (walking/driving/cycling) that we are engaged in rather than buggering around with gadgets.

My humble opinion obviously.

bikeandy61's picture

posted by bikeandy61 [441 posts]
18th January 2011 - 15:28

1 Like

I've been hit from the side too, but I wasn't hurt - those people that are hurt or killed are much more likely to be hit from behind according to the offical accident statistics, you might be more likely to get hit from the side, but you are less likely to be injured or die.

As for the app I'd like to see, I wouldn't need to do anything the phone would be mounted on my bars and would take a picture of anything that moved past me faster than the speed limit, speed limit info is already readable by GPS systems, the phone would have to take my speed in to account before taking the pic, (time and date stamped) and ideally give an indication of how close the vehicle passed too. Tricky, but then that's why they're called smart phones. Maybe one day soon they will be smart enough.

Tony Farrelly's picture

posted by Tony Farrelly [4178 posts]
18th January 2011 - 16:03

1 Like

I also ride a M5 low racer recumbent bike and I have been reading about this Rear Camera for the past 3 years or and waiting for it to come out. Not to sure on my upright, but definetely a must have on my recumbent.

I have been hit only once by a car changing lane without looking and signaling!

posted by eccomi [6 posts]
18th January 2011 - 17:15

1 Like

Funny, some of my most enjoyed/useful purchases are things I don't 'need' for cycling - my Garmin GPS is a prime example. I'm no pro cyclist, and I don't need the information it gives me, but I enjoy measure my performances and see if I'm getting fitter or not; and (b) useful to be able to follow routes. I imagine plenty of people would find this useful for being able to check what is behind you without turning your head, and it would be quite fun to watch your mates' faces as you attack on the steepest climb of the day. Agree that nobody 'needs' this, but it's no chocolate teapot.

posted by step-hent [711 posts]
18th January 2011 - 17:32

1 Like

Another useful gadget - but that's all it is.

Rear end collisions are by a long way the least likely of accident types for a cyclist.

This appears unlikley to show a close pass or any front on or side impact. It is therefore useless for evidence gathering for the vast majority of accidents.

The other concern that I'd have, particulalrly in urban areas is that the cyclist would spend too much time worrying whats going on behind to pay propoer attention to the road ahead and his/her surroundings

posted by Dave Escandell [4 posts]
18th January 2011 - 17:37

1 Like

Quote:
Rear end collisions are by a long way the least likely of accident types for a cyclist

that may or may not be the case, but they're certainly one of the most serious. There was a study done in one american state a few years back (can't remember which) that found that rear end collisions accounted for over half the cyclist deaths.

Dave Atkinson's picture

posted by Dave Atkinson [7702 posts]
18th January 2011 - 18:03

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Dave Escandell wrote:
The other concern that I'd have, particulalrly in urban areas is that the cyclist would spend too much time worrying whats going on behind to pay propoer attention to the road ahead and his/her surroundings

you're only subbing one kind of looking behind you for another though

Barry Fry-up's picture

posted by Barry Fry-up [187 posts]
18th January 2011 - 18:48

1 Like

bello, ma quanto costa? Penso sia molto ma molto utile!!! Applause Applause Applause Applause Applause Applause Applause Applause Applause Applause Applause Applause Applause

MAAD

maad's picture

posted by maad [4 posts]
18th January 2011 - 20:09

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sicuramente sapere che dietro di noi sta arrivando un camion mentre di fronte a noi sta giungendo un altro mezzo pesante è utile e ci cosiglia di stare il più vicino possibile al bordo della carreggiata. Grazie bella idea Wave Wave

MAAD

maad's picture

posted by maad [4 posts]
18th January 2011 - 20:21

1 Like

The prices I've seen quoted for this thing make it prohibitively expensive and having just a 10 second loop is pretty useless. Why not allow it to record a decent amount of time onto a Flash card?

Regarding the recording of accidents, the forthcoming Contour HD with GPS & Bluetooth looks like it might do the job. Even plod, who has largely been reluctant to admit cyclists' helmet cam video as valid evidence thus far, might be forced into considering video with the addition of a GPS time stamp.

Of course, if you're unlucky enough to be filmed breaking the law by someone who is NOT a cyclist then it seems any old video evidence is entirely valid:

http://www.newsshopper.co.uk/news/8797262.ABBEY_WOOD___WELLING__Man_caug...

But, this being the UK, I imagine if it had been a cyclist the nutter was kicking (rather than a dog) not one eyebrow would have been raised, let alone a court case.
Thinking

TiNuts's picture

posted by TiNuts [95 posts]
18th January 2011 - 21:08

1 Like

Look out! The Audi's going to get you!

The fact this is even coming to market I find really depressing. Wouldn't the money be better spent on either some visibility improvements or personal accident insurance instead of an electronic litigation enabler? Boo I say.

joemmo's picture

posted by joemmo [1019 posts]
18th January 2011 - 21:30

1 Like

I can see some potential for this new toy,I have an 11 year old son who I now take riding on the road and I'm teaching him to stay on my wheel he can do it on the track ,that's not a problem, but on the road if he drops off because he is backing off or I'm working to hard for him I can keep an eye on him.I think its kind of a cool Idea.I would like to see it with ANT+ and an Iphone App with the potential to gather other telemetry being able to scroll through different screens etc etc

Ive used the pro cycling computer game to teach him positioning on the track so it pays to be open minded about technology get creative !
P.S He was Junior club track champion 2009 Big Grin

TheSchuhmacher

OziRich's picture

posted by OziRich [4 posts]
19th January 2011 - 9:43

1 Like

also 10 sec loop useless - even if not injured by the time you get up, swear at the driver, check out your bike and then shiver with fear the loop will be rerecorded - need at least 5 min

richdirector's picture

posted by richdirector [56 posts]
19th January 2011 - 14:03

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Andy, never confuse personal experience with the larger picture of stats.

I agree we do need more emphasis on good roadcraft, but sometimes - infact often, people get away with it. Cameras are just a market response to a demand. Mine was invaluable in my insurance claim as it showed the driver to clearly be at fault.

downfader's picture

posted by downfader [204 posts]
22nd January 2011 - 0:43

1 Like

Never having been hit from the rear (or from any angle) it does seem a bit gimmicky- 10 seconds is too small. I was once clipped on the arm by a wing mirror (dodgy old lady driving a micra at low speed, but poor depth/width perception)...she appeared to have noticed that it happened..slowed down and looked like she may have wanted to stop, but possibly due to the traffic behind her panicked and moved on..or was just a doddery old c*w)... rear facing camera would not have been much use.
There is also the aspect of the equipment robustness.
If the bike is mangled, the equipment may also go the same way...and I'm guessing it'll have nowhere near 'black box build' standards. I like gadgets, but just can't see this being anywhere near as useful as it needs to be... Thinking

The_Kaner
FREEEEEEEEDOM!

The _Kaner's picture

posted by The _Kaner [579 posts]
22nd January 2011 - 14:04

1 Like