Innovation stems from imagination. All great discoveries have come from the seeking mind looking at the unseen and pondering on the unknown. Today, when we talk of fire related or blackout related situations where people are trapped in a flat, a building, a godown or any similar enclosed space the word ‘Exigency’ means safe and quick escape to safety.
If we look at a chronology of such disasters, mostly due to fire, we find that the exigency ratio remains poor and many lives and limbs have been lost because the poor victims just didn’t manage to get out in time. A trend that was seen in recent months, was that several corona hospitals caught fire and horrible stories came to life. I wondered why it is that Corona hospitals, or hospitals in general suffered a similar fate, that too in fairly quick succession? Common sense dawned that with the corona numbers increasing the hospitals or nursing homes were packed beyond capacity and the power requirement spurted suddenly. This aggravated the risk of short circuit for one, and most of the fires were due to this reason. But the prime culprit as always, was noncompliance with basic safety protocols like emergency lights, signages, fire extinguishers, sprinklers, staff training and drills etc. which are all simultaneously needed to deem any premises as fire safe in the real sense.
But coming back to imagination, I was wondering how exigency protocols can be tweaked to prevent needless loss of lives in disaster struck enclosed spaces into the future? I imagined a product called safety bubble. A safety bubble could be a cocoon shaped fireproof and blast resistant box like a cupboard or a fridge equipped with inbuilt oxygen cylinder and breathing apparatus. So, if a fire engulfs the premises and escape is impossible a person just enters the cocoon and locks himself or herself in. Even if the house burns down or the cylinder bursts, the cocoon will keep the human safe for say, 6 hours till help arrives. Another option could be the ‘escape room’ option. In many developed countries huge houses or mansions have an escape room where people can lock themselves in with CCTV screens showing them the rest of the premises letting them know when the danger is gone. But this is an improbable option, at least in developing countries like India where living space is at a premium and whole families live in match box like tenements.
That was my take on future exigency but obviously you may have some ideas too. Why not write to us? Who knows, you could be the new saviour of mankind with your path breaking idea.