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Earthquake Ready Table Could Save Countless Lives

Earthquake Ready Table Could Save Countless Lives

By David Ponce

Not everyone is fortunate to be born in a part of the world devoid of earthquakes. It’s estimated that a total of 300 million schoolchildren worldwide go to school in earthquake prone areas and they are inadequately protected in case the building they’re in collapses. See, in many places, the kids are told to take refuge under their desks if things start trembling, but most desks are very unsuited to provide any sort of effective protection. But the table you see above, designed by Arthur Brutter and Ido Bruno from Jerusalem’s Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design is a different beast. Engineered to withstand the impact of up to 1,000 kgs (or 1 ton) dropped on it from what appears to be 8 or 10 feet, the table can provide effective shelter to anyone hiding underneath. What’s more, if arranged in rows, multiple tables then create evacuation corridors that you can crawl through when things have quieted down. It’s even light enough that it can be carried by two kids, so it makes an ideal addition to any classroom.

The earthquake-ready desk will be featured in the 2012 Design Bonanza Bezalel exhibition in Milan from April 17 to April 22, and has been nominated for London Design Museum’s design of the year award. It’s more than just a concept design, though. The table is currently licensed by school furniture manufacturer A.D. Meraz Industries Ltd. for distribution in Israel.

According to Bruno, the team is working on further international manufacturing and distribution negotiations.

It’s around 2.5 times more expensive than current school desks, but its sturdiness also means it will likely outlast current designs by about the same factor.

VIA [ Wired ]