(Amp/Shutterstock)

This crash detector will send GPS coordinates to the authorities if you sustain a severe head impact.

It must've been a barrel of fun determining the blunt force needed to trigger this bike-crash emergency device. Thwack! It didn't register, Bill, I'm going to have to hit you again. WHAM! That got it Bill, thanks. Hey, Bill? Bill???

The makers of this gadget, Tulsa-based ICEdot, say that it's activated only by the magnitude of impact that would require you to replace a helmet, anyway. And that's good, because it's a hassle having your headgear, whenever jostled, phone the authorities and your mom.

Innovation and Invention bug
Notes and Dispatches from the Urban Future See full coverage

The idea behind the ICEdot Crash Sensor is simple: to provide a safety net for people doing potentially dangerous activities in remote areas. The doohickey, which is just under 10 percent funded on Indiegogo, attaches to a helmet and starts a passive, Bluetooth relationship with a smartphone. In the event of a head-smashing accident, it has the phone send S.O.S. texts to emergency contacts and the authorities, complete with GPS coordinates. (I bet Aron Ralston owns, like, three of these things right now.)

When help arrives the phone will already be displaying the rider's medical information to assist in rapid and accurate treatment. People who simply drop their helmets don't automatically incur a helicopter dust-off. After a hard blow, the ICEdot app initiates a countdown paired with noise and vibration; you can shut it off if you're conscious.

There is one big catch to this potentially life-saving device: Should you be in a location with no cellphone service, it doesn't work. So don't go around crashing into fir trees just because you think somebody will carry you to the hospital. Here's a little more info on how it works:

(H/t to Bikespeed.)

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. photo: San Diego's Trolley
    Transportation

    Out of Darkness, Light Rail!

    In an era of austere federal funding for urban public transportation, light rail seemed to make sense. Did the little trains of the 1980s pull their own weight?

  2. Design

    Before Paris’s Modern-Day Studios, There Were Chambres de Bonne

    Tiny upper-floor “maids’ rooms” have helped drive down local assumptions about exactly how small a livable home can be.

  3. Design

    Why Amsterdam’s Canal Houses Have Endured for 300 Years

    A different kind of wealth distribution in 17th-century Amsterdam paved the way for its quintessential home design.

  4. photo: Developer James Rouse visiting Harborplace in Baltimore's Inner Harbor.
    Life

    What Happened to Baltimore’s Harborplace?

    The pioneering festival marketplace was among the most trendsetting urban attractions of the last 40 years. Now it’s looking for a new place in a changed city.

  5. Equity

    What ‘Livability’ Looks Like for Black Women

    Livability indexes can obscure the experiences of non-white people. CityLab analyzed the outcomes just for black women, for a different kind of ranking.

×