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Israelis Develop Device to Remind Parents that Kids Are in Car

Wednesday August 26, 2009 11:19 PM - 7 Comments

baby-car-seatTrying to prevent the next tragedy, two Israeli innovators have recently developed a new system for preventing parents from accidentally locking their kids in the car. The invention has already been registered as an international patent. The principle is fairly simple. If you have opened the doors and have left the child in the car seat, a verbal warning will remind you to take the child out of the car.

The system is very sensitive to any weight, such that even if you left a milk carton in the seat, it will give you a warning.

“This is a very inexpensive system that is compatible with any car seat and can be installed yourself,” explained engineer, Idan Nahami, 26, who developed the new invention together with his brother-in-law, Moshe Attias. “Unfortunately, we need a device like this in Israel. Our patent includes a special light bulb that must be screwed into the car’s light fixture instead of the regular bulb. This light bulb, in addition to acting like a regular light bulb, sends out an infrared signal as soon as the door is open and the internal illumination is automatically activated.

“The second part of the system includes a cushion installed underneath the car seat or booster seat the child sits on, or on the back of the seat. This cushion is activated as soon it detects that something is sitting on it, and initiates a ‘dialogue’ with the infrared light. The cushion also has a buzzer that goes off as long as the door is open and the child is sitting in the seat.”

Nahami, a communications engineer who works at Cisco Israel, started thinking about developing such a system two years ago. Even though he is a bachelor and doesn’t have any children, he was horrified when he heard about the one-and-a-half-year-old toddler, Ophir Balilti, who was accidentally left in the car by her father.

“I couldn’t stop thinking about it. It was a painful, unnecessary death and a trauma that will follow the parent for the rest of his life. A test that I did revealed that the temperature in a car left in the sun for 20 minutes increases from 37 C (98 F) to more than 47 C (116 F). After 40 minutes, the temperature can reach more than 58 C (136 F). These figures aren’t etched strongly enough in the minds of parents who forget their kids in the car, or worse, who knowingly leave them in the car ‘for just a minute.’”

Nahami contacted his brother-in-law, a real-estate agent by profession, and the two invested their money in the project with the initial thought of creating a connection between the car’s lighting system and the children sitting in their car seats.

“If a car can give a warning that you left the lights on when you open the door, why can’t it do this for a child left in the back seat as well?” said Nahami.

The two are currently waiting for the system to pass consumer standards boards. They are also in negotiations with various chain stores who will market the new system.

Nahami estimates that the system will be priced around NIS 100 (about $25). The system will be transferable from one car to another. Tests that have been carried out on 90 different types of vehicles have proven the system to be highly consistent and effective.

{Ynet/Yair Alpert-Matzav.com Israel}

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7 Responses to “Israelis Develop Device to Remind Parents that Kids Are in Car”

1. Comment from Mother
Time August 26, 2009 at 11:34 PM

Some details of how it works have to be worked out. If every time a person gets out of his car a Alert system is going to go off it’s going to annoy people. It has to be something that will work only when the child is forgottened in the car.

2. Comment from MominJ-m
Time August 27, 2009 at 12:45 AM

It only alerts you if it feels any weight in the carseat, which is activated when you get out of the car. I can see many situations where it can be annoying, though. If every time the door is opened to let a passenger off it checks the carseat, imagine doing carpool with a carseated toddler in tow. Every time you drop a kid off at his home, you will be warned about leaving your child in a carseat!

3. Comment from out of towner
Time August 27, 2009 at 8:14 AM

it says that it will have a device that will feel if there is any weight on the seat.

4. Comment from posek hador
Time August 27, 2009 at 10:21 AM

CSO Radio of Lakewood has a similar product also.They can be reached at 7329421101

5. Comment from american citizen
Time August 27, 2009 at 11:03 AM

#1 & #2
So what if it is annoying!!!. The buzzing in my car when I leave the keys in the ignition or the lights on are annoying also. This is pikuach nefesh and you didnt want it to be ANNOYING??

6. Comment from Concerned parent
Time April 21, 2010 at 3:15 PM

Seriously…if you are concerned about the buzzing noise being annoying, you really, really nead to read this:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/02/27/AR2009022701549_5.html?sid=ST2009030602446
Can’t wait for this technology to become available!

7. Comment from Concerned parent
Time April 21, 2010 at 3:22 PM

Correction to above link. It takes you to page 5 of the article. This takes you to page 1:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/02/27/AR2009022701549.html?sid=ST2009030602446

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