Monitor in Car Seats to Prevent Deaths
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On average 38 children die from heat related causes in automobiles in one year. Many of these deaths are attributed to parents forgetting about their sleeping infant or toddler in a car seat. The next step to combating these avoidable deaths is to install a monitor in a car seat, which would recognize when a child is in the car seat. The monitor would detect anything heavier than five pounds that is placed in the car seat. A small device connected to the weight detector would be placed on the key chain with the parents’ car keys. When the parent walked a certain distance away from the car (15 feet), the device on the key chain would begin to alarm, thus notifying the parent that the child is still in the car. The device would also have a button on it (or a keypad to type in a code), to disable the alarm in cases where the parents are aware of the child in the backseat and the child is not in any danger.
The weight monitor would not be very big, only a few inches in width and length. The monitor would also be thin enough to be placed in the car seat so that it would not be detectable and uncomfortable for the child. Depending on the design of the car seat, the monitor may have to be built into the car seat or could be installed separately by sliding it under the cushion or fabric of the car seat. The weight monitor would also have to be safe for the child. This means that the weight monitor would have to be waterproof in case something was spilled on the car seat and it would have to have a safe guard against overheating. A transmitter would be connected to the weight monitor which would act with the device on the key chain in order to establish the maximum distance that the key chain and weight monitor in the car seat could be separated before the alarm would sound. The device that alarms the parents would be small and easily usable since it is attached to the parents’ car keys. Upon completion of the project, a working safe weight monitor in a car seat would be produced and the monitor would work with the key chain to alert the parents when a child is left in the car.