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[email protected] intelligent clothing could help save fishermen’s lives

Safe at Sea team

An eight-member European team led by Norwegian scientists and industrial companies from eight countries are working on developing what’s now being called [email protected] intelligent clothing, a new type of fishermen’s clothing with built-in, life-saving electronics.

Rough Seas

This three-year, 4 million Euro dollar project (approximately. US$5,225,000) would create clothing that would improve the chances of survival for fishermen who are thrown into the sea. The project began last year and will continue through to the end of 2012.

Fishermen at sea

Among the needs expressed by fishermen for this kind of clothing is a proposed built-in, wireless ‘dead man’s handle’. When the wearer falls overboard, this would detect that and automatically kill the boat’s engine, activating a locator beacon. The clothing should also act as a flotation device when immersed in water, and it needs to be impervious to fish blood or other stains, a highly practical feature for wearing on fishing boats.

It’s strongly hoped that this product doesn’t wind up as a mere prototype but actually can succeed as a viable, life-saving product.

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