Most of the time, summer is a blast—it’s a time for fun in the sun, delicious summer foods, and checking experiences off your summer bucket list. But the summer heat can be dangerous, and heat stroke leads to tragedy far too often. According to kidsandcars.org, an average of 37 young children per year die of vehicular heat stroke in the United States. Many of these deaths occur when babies and toddlers are accidentally left in a hot vehicle. Here’s how you could be putting yourself at risk of heat stroke without realizing it.
For Bishop Curry, a fifth grader from McKinney, Texas, one such incident hit close to home. A six-month-old baby from his neighborhood died after hours in a hot car. After hearing about her death, Curry decided that something needed to be done. “It made him sad, and at that point, the wheels started turning in his mind,” said Curry’s father, Bishop Curry IV. Young Curry, who turned 11 this year, has always had a knack for inventing things, and that very day, he drew up a sketch of a device he called “Oasis.”
The device would attach to carseats and monitor the temperature inside the car. If the interior reached a certain temperature, and the device detected a child in the carseat, it would begin to circulate cool air. But that’s not all. Curry also envisions the device using GPS and Wi-Fi technology, which would alert the child’s parents and, if there was no response from them, the police. Read about another incredible invention created by a teen.
Curry’s father believes that the invention has real potential. “The cool thing about Bishop’s thinking is none of this technology is new,” he told the Anna-Melissa Tribune. “We feel like the way he’s thinking and combining all these technologies will get to production faster.” Curry’s father even pitched the Oasis device to Toyota, where he works as an engineer. The manufacturers were so impressed that they sent Curry and his father to an auto safety conference in Michigan. “It’s really important to me because I didn’t think a kid my age would be able to go this far,” Curry said.
In January, Curry’s father launched a GoFundMe campaign for the invention. While Curry already has a provisional patent and a 3D model, they hope to raise money to finalize the patent, build prototypes, and find a manufacturer. Their goal was $20,000, but so many people believed in Oasis’ potential that they have raised more than twice that—over $46,000. Learn about the tiny town that raised thousands of dollars in one day.
Curry’s father remembers the first time he saw his son’s sketch. “I was so proud of him for thinking of a solution,” he said. “We always just complain about things and rarely offer solutions.” Here are some simple ways to beat the heat this summer.
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