Bike helmet and accessories brand POC and car manufacturer Volvo have developed the world’s first car-bike specific helmet crash test at Volvo Cars’ safety research facilities in Gothenburg, Sweden.
POC was founded in 2005 and entered professional cycling with Garmin Sharp in 2014. The company has provided helmets, kit and sunglasses to the team, now EF Education First, over the past six seasons of the partnership.
The brand has had rider safety at the forefront of its product development in cycling, following its AVIP (attention, visibility, interaction, protection) mantra.
The project and research expand on current international helmet safety testing standards, which often sees a helmet impacting a blunt anvil at various speeds and angles. The POC-Volvo testing, through Volvo’s existing testing rig, launches a crash dummy head wearing a helmet towards the hood [bonnet] of a static car at a number of speeds and angles for various measurements.
The two companies say the research project will help to make POC’s helmets safer and more protective in the event of a car-bike accident, while Volvo will use the insights in the future development of safety systems towards more vulnerable road users.
Volvo has already introduced a number of safety systems in its cars, including auto brake detection for pedestrians and cyclists alongside a long history of innovative safety development.
In a joint press release from the two Swedish companies, Malin Ekholm, head of Volvo Cars Safety Centre said: "This project with POC is a good example of our pioneering spirit in safety. We often develop new testing methods for challenging traffic scenarios. Our aim is not only to meet legal requirements or pass rating tests. Instead, we go beyond ratings, using real traffic situations to develop technology that further improves safety."
Oscar Huss, head of product development at POC added: "Much like Volvo Cars, safety is at the very centre of our mission and drives all our ideas and innovations. By working closely with scientific leaders in the POC Lab we strive to lead the way in introducing new safety ideas. Certification standards are essential, but they should never limit our willingness to look beyond their parameters to find better and more innovative ways to reduce the consequences of accidents."