I am no motorcyclist, but when I am following a bike in a car – especially high up in an SUV – I am aware that my eye-line falls some way above its brake lights. Skid lids off, then, to this ingenious – and, I’m told by a biker I gave it to test, brilliant – French device: an extra brake light to attach to the back of a helmet. Fixed magnetically to a metal plate you attach to your helmet, the Cosmo Moto contains motion sensors that detect deceleration, whereupon its 24 LEDs – bright enough to cut through the heaviest rain – instantly light up at eye level for the drivers behind, warning them that the bike is slowing down.
The device, which works for eight hours on a charge, also claims to be the first mobile-phone-connected brake light. A phone app enables you to change the functions of your helmet light – you could, for instance-set it to flash on and off, perhaps if you had broken down and wanted maximum visibility. It will also automatically contact designated family and friends and even the emergency services with your location if it detects the distinctive pattern of a fall at speed from the bike. From this autumn, the same company will be offering the Cosmo Bike, a version for pedal-bike helmets, with built-in turn indicators as well as brake lights.