By MADELINE SCHINDLER
Georgia has one of the highest rates of child heatstroke deaths caused by remaining in a hot vehicle, according to NoHeatStroke.org. A map on the website indicates that from 1998 to 2016, approximately 732 children have died from “vehicular heatstroke.”
A Kickstarter project from New York has developed a technology to prevent such deaths.
Elepho Inc. has developed eClip, a device that attaches to the inside of a car and alerts parents to remove their child from the car seat. Additionally, the device can monitor the temperature of the car’s backseat.
“Hearing year-after-year in the media about continuing hot-car events, we at Elepho decided to try and make a difference to bring a solution to the market to minimize such tragedies,” said Michael Braunold, CEO of Elpho. “We decided to take a different approach, using a smartphone with a dedicated app along with a device we call ‘eClip’ to be placed within the car as a stand-alone item.”
According to Elpho’s page on Kickstarter.com, eClip is “the first low-cost device that helps prevent parents and caregivers from accidentally leaving a young child in the back seat of the car.” The device can be attached to a car seat, seatbelt, diaper bag or strap that is included with the eClip. The eClip device is then connected to the eClip app.
“We believe the eClip will help towards preventing hot-car tragedies, but the keyword is ‘help’,” said Braunold. “This is a partnership with parents, and as such, the eClip can only help if it is operated correctly in accordance with the user instructions. We’re already dependent on [technology] with smartphones, emails, instant messaging, etc. The key is to apply technology to our benefit. We believe eClip does this in helping parents and caregivers protect and safeguard their loved ones, but nevertheless, nothing can replace responsible parenting.”
According to Braunold, the Kickstarter campaign was designated to last 30 days but it reached its funding goal in just three weeks.
Several hundred units have been ordered, but Elepho continues to take advance orders via the eClip web page.
For more information regarding the eClip or Elepho Inc., please visit www.elepho.com/eclip.