In Vantaa, cyclists are known to be monitored by Finland’s first helmet radar. On its first day, the radar found that less than half of those treading through Tikkurila’s underpass wore a helmet.
Tikkurilan those on the outskirts of the station can keep track of how many of those cycling through the station’s northern underpass tunnel wear a helmet.
Cyclists are monitored by a helmet radar installed in the tunnel. It has been installed by the City of Vantaa, the insurance company Lähi-Tapiola and the IT company CGI, which is responsible for the technical implementation of the radar.
The radar technology is based on machine vision, in which the camera captures cyclists and a computer connected to it analyzes the image stream to see if cyclists are wearing a helmet or not. The information is updated on a display in the tunnel that shows the number of cyclists and the percentage of people wearing a helmet during the past day.
According to CGI, all video data is deleted immediately after the helmet analysis.
The first during the entire radar day, 623 cyclists cycled through the tunnel. 48 percent of them wore helmets, says a traffic engineer from the city of Vantaa Heikki Alkila.
“The share is pretty much anticipated. We guessed the figure would be around fifty percent, ”Alkila says.
According to traffic safety statistics, in 2018, about 43 percent of cyclists wore helmets. However, there are regional differences in the figure: in Uusimaa, 57 cyclists wore helmets, while in Satakunta only 20 per cent wore a helmet.
According to the Road Traffic Act, a cyclist should wear a helmet. However, not using it is not punishable.
Currently, about 7 percent of all trips made in Vantaa are made by bicycle. The city aims to increase the share of cycling, but also the safety of the mode of transport.
According to Alkila, the main goal of the radar is to highlight the use of the helmet and its benefits.
“We hope that the visibility of the numbers and the radar will make more and more people start wearing helmets.”
Alkilan It is not known that the use of a helmet in Finland has previously been analyzed in a similar way using machine vision.
At the beginning of June, however, the traffic light experiment ended in Tikkurila, where the machine vision used the same technology to identify pedestrians and cyclists at the busy intersection of Peltolantie and Talvikkitie. In the future, the method could be utilized, for example, so that artificial intelligence could detect a slow pedestrian, so that the green light could continue for this longer.
Read more: Vantaa investigates a method that could soon revolutionize traffic lights – One junction stops unnecessarily 30,000 times a year
Why It is known that the country’s first helmet radar was installed in Tikkurila?
According to Alkila, it is not a question of Vantaa residents or those living in the Tikkurila region being particularly lazy helmet users. The location of the radar was determined by practical reasons.
“The initiative came from Lähi-Tapiola, which approached the city of Vantaa. Inside Vantaa, we are looking for a place that would be along the city’s main bike routes and where there would be a lot of cyclists. In addition, the place had to have easy access to electricity and was wanted to be under a canopy. There were no awful places like that, ”Alila said.
The bicycle radar will monitor Tikkurila’s cyclists until the end of November. Alkila says that so far the project is intended to be non-recurring.
“Towards the end, let’s see if this has achieved anything and whether it would make sense to continue the experiment here or elsewhere.”