Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Dual-purpose shopping bag and emergency helmet

   Grappa is a reusable eco-friendly shopping bag which also doubles a as a helmet in case of a natural disaster such as an earthquake.

"Unlike usual disaster reduction products, the concept behind this is that you can carry it with you at all times."

"Grappa is about the size of an umbrella when it's folded, so it can be carried in a bag. If an earthquake happens, you can use this bag to protect your head, by putting it on your head and closing the snap fastener."

"The helmet part contains a foam material called EPS. It's the same material as that used to absorb impact in ordinary hard hats. We measured its impact resistance in a test, along with 16 types of store-bought emergency hoods. Both types of bag absorbed impact better than the hoods."

"We think these products could be developed in various ways. For example, they could be sold in stores with a brand logo on them. Businesses could also donate them, and malls could keep lots of them for handing out to customers in an emergency."

"To make these affordable, we're now using the cheapest available materials to make low-cost versions. The retail prices are 1,280 yen for the drawstring type and 980 yen for the tote type. So these can be purchased for about 1,000 yen."

"These products were just released in March. We'd like to develop them further, based on ideas and purposes that customers suggest. We want to think more about their color, shape, design, size, and function, so we can improve their safety features in various ways. These are mainly intended for people to carry with them, rather than for keeping at home or school, so we'd like to do a variety of trials. We hope that everyone will carry one of these, especially children."

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