Car airbags have helped prevent countless injuries, offering a soft spot for the head, and these days nearly every other part of the body, to crash into. But cars are not the only places where this technology may prove useful, and a new company called ActiveProtective out of Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania is working on introducing its belt worn airbags for elderly folks prone to falling.
The device is worn much like a regular belt, but on the outside of the clothing, and it includes sensors that monitor the movement of the hips. If the device detects that the person is falling, an airbag pops open before the the person hits the ground, cushioning the fall. The hope is that the ActiveProtective system will prevent all too common hip fractures that often put elderly folks in wheelchairs.
The company is planning to present its technology, currently in prototype stage, at the TEDMED conference happening simultaneously in Washington, D.C. and San Francisco next month.