Italian designer Moshen Saleh has come up with a canopy for bicycles that inflates when it rains.
The idea is that for day-to-day the roof is stowed in a handlebar-mounted binnacle. When it rains the canopy is inflated; a framework of air-filled ribs ensuring it keeps its shape.
Sometimes it rains
Using a bicycle in the in the rain is an issue that seems to trouble non-cyclists more than those of us who cycle regularly. The inflatable bicycle roof joins a ‘rain-gear hall of fame’ that includes all manner of jackets, capes, ponchos and leg protectors.
For example, the Nubrella is an umbrella you wear over your head that claims to protect a cyclist’s head, face and shoulders from rain, wind, snow and extreme cold.
A spokesperson for the Environmental Transport Association (ETA) said: “The trouble with fairings on bicyles is that they add weight and can behave like an unhelpful sail in windy conditions. Modern waterproof fabrics do an impressive job of keeping you dry while allowing your skin to breath, but the low-tech and cheaper alternative is to make the most of the fact that you yourself are waterproof and embrace the occasional soaking – just don’t forget to carry a change of clothes.”
Are you covered?
Cycle insurance from the ETA covers against theft, vandalism and accidental damage (even at race events) and includes third party insurance, personal accident cover and bicycle breakdown cover.