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Voi is teaming up with Autoliv: Using sensor data to better understand why accidents occur

Close-up of a red e-scooter with black handles. A data sensor camera is attached to the e-scooter's steering column. In the background are some buildings. It's a sunny day.

In 2021, Voi published its first safety report and committed to a Vision Zero target: eliminating all severe injuries and fatalities connected to our service by 2030. In line with the target, Voi is now teaming up with Swedish traffic safety company Autoliv in a research project where different traffic situations are evaluated using both street cameras and sensor data. The sensors are initially being tested on 20 e-scooters in Gothenburg, in an ongoing pre-study taking place between June and December 2022.

Shared micromobility is a young service with many novice riders. The vast majority of our riders behave responsibly in traffic and follow the rules of the road. But one accident is one too many. Through the research project with Autoliv, we can analyse different traffic situations, get a better understanding of risks and ultimately a better basis to develop solutions that prevent accidents connected to our service” says André Dankert, Embedded Machine Learning Developer at Voi.

The pre-study that is being conducted by Autoliv aims to increase the understanding of rider behavior, for interactions between e-scooter riders and other road users as well as for causes of crashes. Voi has developed the hardware that is being attached to the 20 vehicles to collect data. These modules are very small and will have no impact on how the e-scooters are conducted in traffic. Customers who use the e-scooters that are included in the study will receive a form after their ride where they are invited to share demographic information to be used for further analysis in the study.

Preliminary results of the testing can be used in a more extensive follow-up project to support the development of a system to prevent crashes, examine safety features and help cities improve road infrastructure.

The use of shared e-scooters has soared in the last few years and with that comes challenges, in particular connected to road safety. Statistics show that the majority of e-scooter crashes don’t involve any other road users, but we don’t know enough about how or why these crashes occur. To find a solution one must first fully understand the problem, which is what we are aiming to achieve with Voi in this study” says Dr Christian-Nils Boda, Senior Research Engineer at Autoliv.

Preliminary results and other updated about the research partnership will be published in December 2022.

Voi’s Vision Zero target and annual safety report

Last year, 26 million rides were taken with e-scooters in Sweden. Statistics collected together with industry peers shows that the crash risk is decreasing in Sweden, meaning that the number of accidents recorded in hospitals and by the police have not increased at the same rate as the number of rides and kilometers ridden.

As an operator of shared micromobility, Voi takes responsibility for the accidents and injuries its service may contribute to. This is reflected in the Vision Zero target the company committed to in 2021, in connection to publishing its first safety report. The report explains what measures Voi has implemented since 2018 to improve road safety. A new safety report will be published later in 2022.

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