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Title:
SAFETY DEVICE
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2021/048124
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A safety device (8) for attachment to a structure (7, Fig 1 ) comprises an impact-absorbing pad (5) and fastening means (6). Pad (5) comprises a first pad portion or layer (1) having a comprising a first impact-absorbing material, which may comprise flame-retardant foam, and at least one second pad portion or layer (2) comprising a second impact-absorbing material. The portions may have different densities. Portion (2) may be configured in use to extend adjacent to a structure (7, Fig 1 ) to which device (8) is attached. Device (8) may further comprise a third pad portion (3), which may be configured in use to extend adjacent to a structure (7, Fig 1 ). Portion (2) and portion (3) may be made from the same or different impact-absorbing materials, which may be honeycomb structure comprising thermoplastics material. There may be more than one of each of portion (2) and portion (3), and they may comprise rubber, aramid or para-aramid, for example. The device (8) may comprise a pad cover (4), which may cover some or all of the portions (1, 2, 3), and portions (2 or 3) may be affixed to cover (4), which may comprise water-resistant, flame-retardant, high-visibility or cut-proof material. The fastening means (6) may comprise straps, a buckle, hook and loop fastener, snap fasteners, self-adhesive or eyelets.

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Inventors:
CHING MICHAEL (CH)
Application Number:
PCT/EP2020/075075
Publication Date:
March 18, 2021
Filing Date:
September 08, 2020
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
SWISSLOGO AG (CH)
International Classes:
A63B71/00; A41D13/015; A41D31/28; E04F13/08
Domestic Patent References:
WO2009032585A12009-03-12
WO2018075108A12018-04-26
Foreign References:
GB2312917A1997-11-12
US20120060265A12012-03-15
EP2165742A12010-03-24
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WYNNE-JONES IP LIMITED (GB)
Download PDF:
Claims:
Claims

1. A safety device for attachment to a structure, the device comprising an impact absorbing pad and fastening means, wherein the impact absorbing pad comprises a first pad portion comprising a first impact-absorbing material and at least one second pad portion comprising a second impact-absorbing material, the second impact-absorbing material being different from the first impact-absorbing material.

2. A device as claimed in claim 1 , further comprising at least one third pad portion comprising a third impact-absorbing material which is different from the first impact-absorbing material.

3. A device as claimed in claim 1 or 2 wherein the first pad portion has a first density and the at least one second pad portion has a second density, the second density being greater than the first density.

4. A device as claimed in claim 3 when appended to claim 2, wherein the third pad portion has a third density, the third density being greater than the first density. 5. A device as claimed in any preceding claim, wherein the at least one second impact-absorbing material comprises a honeycomb structure comprising thermoplastics material.

6. A device as claimed in any of claims 2-5, wherein the third impact-absorbing material comprises a honeycomb structure comprising thermoplastics material.

7. A device as claimed in any preceding claim, wherein the at least one second pad portion is configured in use to extend adjacent the structure.

8. A device as claimed in any of claims 1 -6 wherein the at least one third pad portion is configured in use to extend adjacent the structure.

9. A safety device as claimed in any of claims 2-8, wherein the second and third pad portions are both made from the same type of impact-absorbing material.

10. A safety device as claimed in any of claims 2-8, wherein the second and third pad portions are made from different types of impact-absorbing materials.

11 .A device as claimed in any of the preceding claims wherein the second pad portion is affixed directly to the first pad portion.

12. A device as claimed in any of claims 2-11 wherein the third pad portion is affixed directly to the second pad portion.

13. A device as claimed any of the preceding claims further comprising a pad cover.

14. A device as claimed in claim 13, wherein the cover encloses only the first pad portion.

15. A device as claimed in claim 13, wherein the cover encloses only the first and second pad portions.

16. A device as claimed in claim 14 wherein the second pad portion is affixed to the cover.

17. A device as claimed in claim 15, as appended to claim 2, wherein the third pad portion is affixed to the cover.

18. A device as claimed in any preceding claim, wherein the pad portions comprise flame-retardant material.

19. A device as claimed in any of claims 13-18, wherein the cover comprises flame- retardant material.

20. A device as claimed in any of claims 13-19, wherein the cover comprises water- resistant or waterproof material.

21 . A device as claimed in any of claims 13-20, wherein the cover comprises high- visibility material.

22. A device as claimed in any of claims 13-21 , wherein the cover comprises cut- proof or cut-resistant material, for example an aramid or para-aramid material, for example Kevlar (RTM), Twaron (RTM), Nomex (RTM) or Technora (RTM).

23. A device as claimed in any of the preceding claims, wherein the fastening means comprises a strap.

24. A device as claimed in any of the preceding claims, wherein the fastening means comprises hook-and-loop fastener.

25. A device as claimed in any of claims 1 -24, wherein the fastening means comprises a buckle, for example a cam buckle.

26. A device as claimed in any of claims 1-25, wherein the fastening means comprises a snap fastener. 27. A device as claimed in any of claims 1 -26, wherein the fastening means comprises a self-adhesive portion.

Description:
Safety device

Background

The present invention relates to safety devices for attachment to structures, with applications in various industries, for example the construction industry. It is known to provide safety devices, such as protective, impact-absorbing pads, for attachment to a structure (e.g. scaffolding poles and support posts), one such example being the Scaffpad (RTM), which generally comprises a foam pad inside a fabric jacket. Such devices can prevent damage to structures and equipment as well as preventing injury to people and animals, by absorbing impact and increasing visibility. However, known impact-absorbing pads can suffer from disadvantages such as uneven wear on surfaces that come into contact with the structure to which they are attached, or excessive wear to their outward-facing surfaces due to abrasion through use. This may result in damage which renders the device useless and necessitates its replacement. The present invention avoids the disadvantages of known safety devices by providing a multi-layer pad structure which reinforces the pad as necessary for a variety of applications, resulting in improved durability, and therefore an increased product lifespan.

The device is suitable for use in a range of industries and activities where protection from hazardous impacts with hard structures, projections or corners is necessary and high visibility is important. The device can be used in pedestrian areas such as thoroughfares, gangways, walkways, on construction sites, industrial sites and ships, and in factories, sports and agriculture, for example, and can be carefully placed to avoid accident and injury.

Summary

According to a first aspect of the present invention there is provided a safety device for attachment to a structure, the device comprising an impact-absorbing pad and fastening means, wherein the impact absorbing pad comprises a first pad portion comprising a first impact-absorbing material and at least one second pad portion comprising a second impact-absorbing material, the second impact-absorbing material being different from the first impact-absorbing material. In an embodiment, the device may comprise at least one third pad portion comprising a third impact-absorbing material which is different from the first impact-absorbing material.

The first pad portion may have a first density and the at least one second pad portion may have a second density, the second density being greater than the first density. The third pad portion may have a third density, the third density being greater than the first density. The third density may be the same as or different from the second density.

In an embodiment, the at least one second impact-absorbing material may comprise a honeycomb structure comprising thermoplastics material. The third impact absorbing material may comprise a honeycomb structure comprising thermoplastics material.

In an embodiment, the at least one second pad portion may be configured in use to extend adjacent a structure. Alternatively, where the device comprises at least one third pad portion, the at least one third pad portion may be configured in use to extend adjacent the structure.

The second and third pad portions are both made from the same type of impact absorbing material, or may be made from different types of impact-absorbing materials.

In an embodiment, the second pad portion may be affixed directly to the first pad portion.

In an embodiment comprising a third pad portion, the third pad portion may be affixed directly to the second pad portion. In an embodiment, the device may comprise a cover, which may enclose the first pad portion, the first and second pad portions or all of the pad portions.

In an embodiment in which the cover encloses the first pad portion, the second pad portion may be affixed to the cover.

In an embodiment in which the cover encloses first and second pad portions, the third pad portion may be affixed to the cover.

In an embodiment, the pad portions may comprise flame-retardant material.

In an embodiment, the cover may comprise flame-retardant material, water-resistant material, waterproof material, high-visibility material and/or cut-proof or cut-resistant material, which may be an aramid or para-aramid material, for example Kevlar (RTM), Twaron (RTM), Nomex (RTM) or Technora (RTM). In an embodiment, the fastening means may comprise a strap, which may comprise a first strap extending from a first end of the pad and a second strap extending from a second end of the pad.

In an embodiment, the fastening means may comprise hook-and-loop fastener, a buckle, such as a cam buckle, a snap fastener, a self-adhesive portion and/or eyelets.

Brief description of drawings

The invention may be performed in various ways and embodiments thereof will now be described, by way of example only, reference being made to the accompanying drawings, in which:

Figure 1 shows an embodiment of the invention attached to a structure in use.

Figure 2 shows an embodiment of the invention.

Figure 3 shows cross-sections of embodiments of the invention comprising first and second pad portions.

Figure 4 shows cross-sections of embodiments of the invention having first, second and third pad portions, wherein the third pad portions comprise an impact-absorbing material which is different from the impact-absorbing material from which the the second portions are made. Figure 5 shows cross-sections of embodiments of the invention having first, second and third pad portions, wherein the third pad portions comprise the same-impact absorbing material as that from which the second pad portions are made. Figures 6A, 6B and 6C show impact-absorbing material comprising a honeycomb structure, which may be used to form the second and/or third pad portions in some embodiments.

Detailed description of drawings With reference to Figures 1 and 2, there is illustrated an embodiment of a safety device 8 according to the present invention. Figure 2 shows a simplified illustration of the safety device 8, which comprises an impact-absorbing pad 5 (exemplar cross-sections of which are illustrated in Figures 3-5) and fastening means 6 which, in this example embodiment, may comprise straps. Figure 1 shows the device 8 of Figure 2 in use, secured to a hard tubular structure 7 (such as a scaffolding pole) by its attachment means 6. In this example, the impact absorbing pad 5 may be flexible, and provides protection for users who come into proximity with the hard structure, as well as preventing damage through impact to the structure. Known safety devices comprise a pad made from a single layer or pad portion, using only one type of impact-absorbing material. The present invention is distinguished from these devices by pad portions comprising different impact-absorbing materials, examples of which are shown in cross section in Figures 3-5. The cross sections shown in Figures 3-5 are taken along plane A, which is illustrated in Figure 2. Figure 3 shows cross-sections of embodiments of the impact-absorbing pad 5 of safety device 8 comprising a two-portion pad configuration. A first pad portion 1 and a second pad portion 2 form pad 5. An embodiment of the invention with this configuration of pad portions may be secured to a structure in such a way that in use the second pad portion 2 extends adjacent the structure. The is advantageous when the second pad portion 2 comprises a more hard-wearing material than the first pad portion 1 , as damage to the first pad portion 1 when the device is attached to a hard structure may be prevented, particularly if the structure comprises corners or projections. The second pad portion may comprise material with different or improved impact-absorbing characteristics compared to the first pad portion. The first and second pad portions may have different densities. Alternatively, in an embodiment, the first pad portion 1 may in use extend adjacent the structure and the second pad portion 2 may face outwardly from the structure to prevent damage to the pad 5 on a side facing outwardly from the structure. In a further alternative embodiment, the device 8 may comprise two second pad portions 2, which may be positioned on opposite sides of the first pad portion 1 so that, in use, one second pad portion 2 extends adjacent a structure and another second pad portion 2 extends along the outwardly-facing surface of the pad 5. The pad portions 1 , 2 may be directly bonded to each other, as shown in Figures 3a and 3b, and a cover 4 may be provided which covers both the first and second pad portions 1 , 2, as shown in Figure 3b. Alternatively, the cover 4 may cover the first pad portion 1 only, as shown in Figure 3c, and the second pad portion may be bonded to the cover 4 rather than the first pad portion 1. Where the at least one second pad portion 2 is bonded to the cover 4, damage to the cover 4 may also be prevented. The first pad portion 1 may be made from a material such as flame-retardant foam, while the second pad portion may be made from a material with a honeycomb structure, such as that manufactured by Koroyd (RTM), which comprises an array of co-polymer extruded tubes, which may be provided as a sheet, examples of which are illustrated in Figure 6A and 6B. The axes of the tubes are substantially parallel and extend substantially perpendicularly to the plane of the sheet. The honeycomb material may absorb impact through plastic deformation. Figure 6A shows three different types of honeycomb material. These are made from co-polymer extruded tubes with diameters of different sizes to produce sheets with cells of different sizes, as shown in Figure 6A. Figure 6B shows a sheet of honeycomb material before impact, while Figure 6C shows a sheet of honeycomb material following absorption of impact through plastic deformation.

Alternatively, the second pad portion 2 may be made from a resilient material such as rubber, a suitable reinforcing material such as aramid or para-aramid material, for example Kevlar (RTM), Twaron (RTM), Nomex (RTM) or Technora (RTM), or fabric, fibre, plastics material, metal or wood, for example.

The cover 4 may be made from any suitable material, such as such as flame-retardant material, water-resistant material, waterproof material, high-visibility material and/or cut-proof material or cut-resistant material, for example an aramid or para-aramid material, for example Kevlar (RTM), Twaron (RTM), Nomex (RTM) or Technora (RTM). an aramid or para-aramid material, for example Kevlar (RTM), Twaron (RTM), Nomex (RTM) or Technora (RTM). for example an aramid or para-aramid material, for example Kevlar (RTM), Twaron (RTM), Nomex (RTM) or Technora (RTM). The cover may be printed with a brand marking or advertising, or with details of technical or safety standards.

Figures 4 and 5 show cross-sections of embodiments of the impact-absorbing pad 5 of the safety device 8 comprising a three-portion pad configuration. The portions may be directly bonded to each other, as shown in Figures 4a, 4b, 5a and 5c, and may all be enclosed by a cover 4. Alternatively, the cover may enclose only the first and second pad portions 1 , 2 and the third pad portion 3 may be bonded to the cover 4, as shown in Figures 4c and 5c. In other alternative embodiments, the cover 4 may enclose only the first pad portion 1 , with the second pad portion 2 being bonded to the cover 4 and the third pad portion 3 being bonded to the second pad portion 2. In the embodiments shown in Figure 4, both the second pad portion 2 and the third pad portion 3 each comprise impact-absorbing material or resilient or reinforcing material that is different from the impact-absorbing material from which the first pad portion 1 is comprised, but the second and third pad portions 2, 3 also comprise impact-absorbing materials or resilient or reinforcing materials that are different from each other. For example, second pad portion 2 may be made from rubber or a honeycomb structure comprising thermoplastics material, while third pad portion 3 may be made from a suitable reinforcing material such as aramid or para-aramid material, for example Kevlar (RTM), Twaron (RTM), Nomex (RTM) or Technora (RTM). The second pad portion 2 and the third portion 3 may have densities that are greater than the first pad portion 1 , and may also have densities that are different from each other or the same as each other. The third pad portion may comprise material with different or improved impact-absorbing characteristics compared to the first and/or second pad portions. In the embodiments shown in Figure 5, the second pad portion 2 and third pad portion 3 are made from the same material. In the embodiments shown in Figures 4 and 5, the first pad portion 1 may be made from a material such as flame-retardant foam.

Embodiments of the invention with pads 5 having cross sections as shown in Figures 4 and 5 may be secured to a structure in such a way that the third pad portion 3 extends adjacent the structure. Alternatively, in some embodiments, the first pad portion 1 may extend in use adjacent the structure and the third pad portion 3 may face outwardly from the structure to prevent damage to the pad 5 on a side facing outwardly from the structure. In further alternative embodiments, the device 8 may comprise two third pad portions 3, which may be positioned on opposite sides of the first pad portion 1 so that, in use, one third pad portion 3 extends adjacent the structure and a further second pad portion extends along the outward-facing surface of the pad 5.

As shown in Figures 1 and 2, the safety device comprises fastening means for attaching the safety device to a structure 6, and these may be straps which may extend from first and second ends of the impact-absorbing pad 5. The fastening means may comprise hook and loop fastener, a buckle, a snap fastener or a self-adhesive portion may be used to secure the device to a structure, with or without the straps.