Dad creates 'drowning prevention drone'

Living in the extreme heat of the Valley means many homes have pools to stay cool and because of that drownings are a...

Posted: Jul 23, 2018 2:41 PM
Updated: Jul 23, 2018 2:41 PM

Living in the extreme heat of the Valley means many homes have pools to stay cool and because of that drownings are a frequent, and devastating reality here in the Phoenix area.

A new invention is about to hit the market that may help save lives.

It's a gut-wrenching call for all involved.

"There's a certain level of emotion that's stirred when you know you're going to a drowning and it's a child," said Phoenix Fire Capt. Jake Van Hook.

"Watching all these stories happening on a daily basis of kids drowning," Lee Kambar is a dad who lives in Gilbert.

According to Phoenix Fire, so far in 2018, there have been 27 drownings calls and six deaths in just Phoenix alone.

"It takes an impact on you, you feel that you sense that loss," said Capt. Van Hook.

"A light bulb went off in my head, there's a problem, let's find a solution to it," said Kambar.

Saddened by those statistics and so moved by the love of his own children, Kambar decided to take action and decided to create something to do just that.

"I would like Morningstar to be a humanitarian thing. Our kids are the most valuable thing to us as parents and for such a tragedy to occur it's unnecessary."

Kambar and his partner, Andrew Roper, say Morningstar is a drone device which will act like an extra set of eyes around your pool.

"It's a hyper-drone. It sits in the middle of your pool and floats around. It has dual cameras top and bottom cameras that rotate 360 degrees. It's a two-piece device app software and hardware. It has motion detection and facial recognition," said Kambar.

One camera sits above the device to monitor the pool's surroundings.

"The minute they approach the pool, it will send you notification saying [someone's] by the pool."

The other camera sits underwater and alerts you by sound and live video when something or someone has gone into the water.

"Say you miss that [first] then you get a second notification from the bottom camera showing you a live image inside the pool of your kid dealing with a crisis. From there you can push "emergency contact" and dispatch images and services to the address where Morningstar resides," said Kambar.

"Every second counts in these situations," said Capt. Van Hook.

Kambar says he hopes his device can give first responders those extra critical seconds that may make the difference in saving a life.

"This is Dad looking after his children, hopefully it can help affect other dads and other families," said Kambar.

The Phoenix Fire Department can't endorse any specific products. While they advocate for all types of safety barriers, they say nothing can substitute constant supervision and watching your kids around water at all times.

Kambar hopes to have the Morningstar SOS device on the market by the end of the year. He expects the cost of the product to be under $1,000.

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