Most LifeGuards are designed with an internal steel structure that is engineered and proven to support over one million pounds, and for good reason. If you take a good look around your building we will bet that there is a staggering amount of weight above your head. We analyzed typical construction both old and new and calculated the weight of entire sections of many floors along with the contents. We calculated the acceleration of this mass and then added a margin of safety. The result is a safety device that is up to the task of protecting you and those you care about under the most challenging situation - a building collapse.
Steel sides, top and floor prevent punctures and keep you entirely inside. There are so many hazards in a building, most of which cannot be seen until the building comes apart. Glass, steel, concrete, pipes, sheet metal, hangars, and even a drop-ceiling itself all pose formidable hazards to humans. We designed a support structure for our protective plates that leaves no large unreinforced areas. Key areas require around 30,000 lbs to puncture; other areas around 15,000 lbs to puncture and critical areas are substantially more. Furthermore, these weights need to be concentrated on a point about the size of a quarter or the weight required for puncture gets even higher. What this means to you is that it is highly unlikely that a sheet would tear, but if it should, there are many beams nearby to pick up the load.
They provide protection against falling debris, blasts and high-velocity hazards on any floor and retain their protective qualities even if they roll. In lab testing, LifeGuards retain approximately 75% or more of their strength when a load is applied at a 45 degree angle.
A LifeGuard has enough room to lie down low inside. Can you imagine staying crouched in the fetal position for even 10 minutes? Try it and then you'll realize the importance of being able to straighten your legs. This position also allows you to stay low inside the LifeGuard to further your protection.
On top is our “Crumple Zone” that absorbs energy from falling objects like the bumper system of a car. The big difference here is that the biggest loads come from above so our “bumper” is on top. The Crumple Zone, like an automotive airbag, does not get utilized unless the forces are very large.
The insides of LifeGuards are heavily padded with handles and usually outfitted with food, water, HEPA quality mask, emergency lighting, signaling devices, medical supplies, blankets, provisions for sanitary waste and other life sustaining items. We recommend these items because in the event of a complete building collapse, it will take some time for rescuers to arrive. Why not be comfortable while you wait?
Comprehensive analysis of beam angles, floor loading, sprinkler head/conduit/rebar puncture potential and a myriad of other factors contributed to the design of LifeGuard™, maximizing its protective capability.
Proof of concept was completed in 2011 during the controlled demolition of the Oak
Knoll Naval Hospital in Oakland, CA. Four desks - two school desks and
two full-size desks - were placed in a variety of locations inside the ten-story
concrete and steel structure. All four desks performed perfectly with no incursions into the protective void.