Most parents are fairly diligent about making sure that their young children buckle up at the start of car trips. Unfortunately, due to the fact that many cars don't have rear seatbelt warning systems, they may not realize that their kids have released their belt while en route. Needless to say, the outcome of an accident under such circumstances could be tragic. That's why an Australian startup has launched buckle me up, a system that wirelessly adds a rear seatbelt warning system to cars that don't already have one.
buckle me up consists of a dash-mounted alert module, and a couple of reed switch-equipped cartridges that adhere to two of the rear seatbelt buckles.
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As long as the rear belts are buckled, nothing happens. Should one be released, however, that belt's cartridge will transmit a radio signal. Upon receiving that signal, the dash unit will alert the driver by flashing and beeping.
Users can attach the dash module wherever they wish, via an included adhesive-backed magnetic mounting plate. The unit's battery can be charged via USB, using the vehicle's power port. One 30- to 60-minute charge should be good for about five to six hours of use – keep in mind, the module only needs to be turned on when driving children around.
The non-rechargeable batteries in the seatbelt cartridges should last for about 18 months of "average driving time." LEDs on the dash module let users know if either its or the seatbelt cartridges' batteries are getting low.
buckle me up is available now, for AUD$189 (about US$147) a kit. Additional seatbelt cartridges can be purchased for AUD$39.95 (US$30).
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