Ford Offering Inflatable Safety Belt, Other Safety Tech Licenses
Ford believes that there is no such thing as too much of a good thing—particularly when it comes to safety technology. That’s why the automaker today issued a plea to its competitors: please, use our patented safety technology. Ford is offering licenses to intellectual properties such as its inflatable safety belt, Roll Stability Control ™, and Belt-Minder® system at reduced prices in the hopes that they will help keep travelers in all modes of transportation safe and sound.
“Ford’s longstanding commitment to democratizing technology goes beyond our customers,” said Bill Coughlin, president and CEO, Ford Global Technologies, in a press release. “In this case, the wider adoption of inflatable safety belts has the potential to make travel safer and help mitigate passenger injuries – especially among children and the elderly.”
The inflatable safety belt is currently available on the Ford Explorer, Flex, Fusion, and 2015 F-150 and the Lincoln MKT and MKZ. The inflatable safety belt deploys in the event of an accident and helps distribute crashes forces over up to five times greater an area, helping reduce the head and neck motion and decreasing the likelihood of severe injury.
Other safety technologies available at the Ford Technology Licensing Portal include:
- Roll Stability Control™, which monitors vehicle movement in relation to road surface and automatically applies brakes/reduces engine power to help avoid a rollover
- “Surveillance mode” tech from the Police Interceptor, which alerts drivers and passengers about pedestrians or vehicles approaching from the rear
- Ford’s Belt-Minder® system, which NHTSA and IIHS credited with increasing the rate of drivers/passengers who wear their seat belts by sounding a persistent tone
- Driver alert warning system that can compute a driver’s attention level and display it on the instrument panel on request; the level is determined by how well a driver keeps within their lanes and how frequently it changes course, and drivers can be given additional alerts if their attention level falls below a certain threshold
Ford says that this tech, as well as the inflatable safety belt, could be used for airborne or waterway traveling and could be used by military outfits or rival automakers. All that Ford seemed to be missing here was a large neon sign that reads “HEY GM, THIS IS HOW YOU DO VEHICLE SAFETY.”