West Yorkshire Police use connected technologies to ensure the safety of UK cycling events

Together with West Yorkshire Police we’re using technology to keep cyclists and fans safe. Ensuring public safety around high-profile cycling events across the United Kingdom is a highly specialized area of expertise and one where West Yorkshire Police have taken a leading role. Building on their experience in hosting the Grand Depart of the Tour de France and the Tour de Yorkshire, they work with police forces around the country to ensure cyclists and spectators are kept safe. We helped West Yorkshire Police develop solutions that allow them to see the location of public safety personnel and vehicles from multiple police forces, as well as any potential hazards. All the information is updated in real time, allowing them to create a protective bubble around the races, keeping the riders and spectators safe and minimizing disruption.

Delivering safe and secure cycling events

Ensuring public safety at high-profile cycling events in the UK is essential to the continued success of the sport.

As the profile of the sport has grown, with an increase in professional races and public participation, the demands on police forces to ensure that these are conducted safely, and with minimal disruption, have expanded.

On the back of their success in coordinating public safety efforts at events such as the Grand Depart of the Tour de France, the Tour de Yorkshire and the UCI World Championships, West Yorkshire Police has taken on a leading role in similar events across the UK.

These include the Tour of Britain, the Women’s Tour, Ride London and the Tour de Yorkshire.

In order to minimize the disruption to the public at any of these events the team have to create a virtual envelope around the race, closing roads and intersections ahead of the riders and opening it up once it’s safe.

This requires the deployment of up to 36 police officers from multiple police forces-in a fleet of cars, on motorbikes and in vans, all connected to each other so they can operate seamlessly together.

Over the past five years, West Yorkshire Police have worked with us to create a technology platform to enable this.

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Which services?  

Consulting and Professional Services, Digital Development, Managed Network and Cloud Data Center, Secure application delivery, Secure mobile application, Real-time data analytics

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Which technologies?  

IoT (Internet of Things), Cloud, Managed Network, Managed Data Center 

‘Embracing digital processes allows us to give our personnel almost real-time information about hazards on the road, making high-profile cycling events safer for all concerned.’
Duncan Street, National Liaison to British Cycling and CEG Commander Operational Support, West Yorkshire Police

A technology platform for real-time race-related public safety information

This cloud-hosted platform takes a holistic view of the logistics required to deliver events like these in a safe manner.

In the build-up to the race, the team can detail the exact route that will be taken and highlight any specific hazards. These hazards could include tight turns, roundabouts, road islands and potholes, to name but a few.

This is all done in the leadup to the event so that the officers know exactly what conditions to expect, and can lead the riders through without any sudden deviations.

Police vehicles are equipped with a tracking device with GPS capability and this information is relayed via the local mobile phone network to the cloud where it’s collated and analyzed.

During the event, this gives them full visibility of all their vehicles so that those tasked with ensuring the safety of spectators can see exactly where the race is, minimizing the risk to both riders and fans.

The hazard-mapping functionality eliminates a process that was largely manual before, and should any new issues emerge during the running of the race, these are pushed, in real time, to all vehicles on the route.

Some of the innovation that was required from us was more physical in nature, including 3D printing mounts for all the different motorcycles in use, so that the devices employed could be properly secured.

Delivering world-class public safety at premier cycling events

Public and rider safety is of critical importance to the West Yorkshire Police at all the events they are involved with. Taking advantage of technology, they’ve worked together with us to create a platform that provides all officers with real-time information about the race, the route and the personnel involved in securing it.

Real-time information

The real-time nature of the cloud-hosted platform gives every vehicle access to the same, up-to-the-second information. The officers are then able to act based on reliable information, keeping the race moving and minimizing disruption to nearby communities.

Hazard management

The platform allows the team to digitally map all road hazards in advance and update this information at any time. This ensures that as a race progresses, the entire team is aware of the changing conditions on the route.

Seamless cooperation

The team managing these events consists of specialists from across the UK. The platform has enabled closer collaboration between organizers, race marshals and the police in the run up to races and during the events themselves, ensuring the delivery of safe and secure world-class events.