Australian electric scooter and bike-sharing company Beam is preparing to test the Pedestrian Shield system, which will automatically limit the speed of vehicles on sidewalks and in difficult environments.
The technology is being tested in several Australian state capitals. Pedestrian Shield uses an AI system developed by Drover AI – the module is able to recognize roads, sidewalks and bike lanes, including using nothing more than an integrated camera, so nobody has to meticulously mark the area on GPS maps .
Local councils or fleet operators may set speed limits at their own discretion. The Beam has a speed limit of up to 25 km/h on the road and cycle paths and up to 15 km/h on the sidewalk.
At the same time, the system can do even more – the Drover solution will be able to determine whether users are parking electric scooters in permitted locations. For example, to avoid vehicles being stuck in parking garages with a weak GPS signal or carelessly riding scooters in shopping malls, Drover can park vehicles in such places.
In addition to scooters, the system can work similarly with electric bikes and, although somewhat limiting users’ freedom of choice, is an interesting technological solution for urban environments that can partially ensure pedestrian safety. As reported on the Beam website, the next phase of testing will begin in the middle of the year, during which the AI will begin to prevent collisions with pedestrians based on the camera’s video analysis.