Prepare-aphernalia: Spark Awards ‘Highlights’

The Spark! Awards is an international participatory design competition, and their 2011 Design Content winners have several interesting ideas for incorporating preparedness.

You likely have had to deal with a blackout. In today’s technological and mobile society, we can take access to lighting for granted. This Spark Award design suggests incorporating an LED flashlight into a door handle. It would integrate into an electronic locking mechanism, which could disengage the lock and engage the continuously charging flashlight in the case of a blackout. Not only that – but as you see below it can actually be quite stylish. An integrated light sensor could allow the flashlight to act as a night-light or mark exits.

Another Spark Award winner was the design for a U-Haul Emergency Response Conversion Kit for the American Red Cross. In a major disaster thousands of response vehicles could be needed across a large geographic area. Keeping a fleet of this magnitude would be difficult, requiring huge investment in purchasing and upkeep. This simple idea proposes prepared industrial palettes of emergency supplies with word-less instructions for volunteers to convert a rental truck into an emergency response vehicle, in this example using vehicles from locally founded U-Haul. An added benefit would be that for large local disasters, response vehicles from far away chapters would not be necessary (saving money, volunteer travel time, and potentially reduce response time).

Yet another winning design was for a Epi-Inject Wall Mounted Epinephrine Injector, making epinephrine injections easy and readily available for cases of severe allergic reactions. Want to see all the design ideas? Click here!

[Note: We don’t endorse, nor sell, the prepare-aphernalia products we feature here. We just like to share cool stuff we come across.]

Photo 1: Gizmodo

Photo 2: Art Center College of Design, Pengtao Yu