A newly developed piece of clothing called the Speed Vest is giving bicycle safety some much-needed visibility.
The reflective vest displays its wearer’s speed in bright neon numbers on the back, increasing the rider’s visibility while addressing the common complaint that bikes slow car traffic. Automobile drivers’ impatience might be mitigated if the Speed Vest confirms that the bike in front of them is traveling at or near the car’s speed.
The Speed Vest is still in the prototype stage, but its designers—Brady Clark, of Minneapolis, and Mykle Hansen, of Portland, Oregon—have already won the Bike Gadget Contest held by the Hub Bike Co-Op in Minneapolis and showcased their invention at the Minnesota State Fair this summer. The bike blog Urban Velo has some playful suggestions for alternative messages bicyclists could convey via the Speed Vest.