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Patent 2405355 Summary

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(12) Patent: (11) CA 2405355
(54) English Title: SEAMOBILE SAFETY BELT
(54) French Title: CEINTURE DE SECURITE POUR MOTOMARINE
Status: Deemed expired
Bibliographic Data
(51) International Patent Classification (IPC):
  • B60R 22/12 (2006.01)
(72) Inventors :
  • ROSS, WILLIAM (Canada)
(73) Owners :
  • ROSS, WILLIAM (Canada)
(71) Applicants :
  • ROSS, WILLIAM (Canada)
(74) Agent: AVENTUM IP LAW LLP
(74) Associate agent:
(45) Issued: 2010-02-23
(22) Filed Date: 2002-09-26
(41) Open to Public Inspection: 2003-04-12
Examination requested: 2007-09-12
Availability of licence: N/A
(25) Language of filing: English

Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT): No

(30) Application Priority Data:
Application No. Country/Territory Date
60/328,420 United States of America 2001-10-12

Abstracts

English Abstract

A tandem riding vehicle safety device is disclosed. The safety device comprises an elongate tension bearing member having a width sufficient for providing a reasonable force per unit area upon a tandem riding vehicle operator when engaged therewith and supporting a passenger of the tandem riding vehicle including a first end and a second end for, in use, being pulled about a front of an operator from both sides to releasably secure a passenger to the operator; a first handle connected to the member and a second handle connected to the member the handles for grasping by the passenger and for use in pulling of the elongate tension bearing member for providing tension therein; and absent a fastener proximate opposing ends of the member for coupling the member to form a closed loop.


French Abstract

L'invention concerne un dispositif de sécurité pour véhicule de type tandem. Le dispositif de sécurité comprend un élément oblong porteur de tension ayant une largeur suffisante pour fournir une force raisonable par unité de surface sur le conducteur d'un véhicule de type tandem et appuyer un passager du véhicule de type tandem. Le dispositif comporte une première extrémité et une seconde extrémité qui sont tirées vers l'avant du conducteur des deux côtés pour attacher de manière amovible un passager au conducteur; une première poignée liée à l'élément et une seconde poignée liée à l'élément, les poignées étant destinées à une prise par le passager et servant à tirer l'élément oblong porteur de tension pour assurer une tension à cet endroit; et le dispositif est dépourvu d'une pièce de fixation près des extrémités opposées de l'élément pour l'accouplement de l'élément afin de former une boucle fermée.

Claims

Note: Claims are shown in the official language in which they were submitted.



What is claimed is:


1. A tandem riding vehicle safety device comprising:
a non-separable elongate tension bearing member for supporting a passenger of
the
tandem riding vehicle, the non-separable elongate tension bearing member
including a first end
and a second end for, in use, being pulled about a front of an operator from
both sides to
releasably secure the non-separable elongate tension bearing member to the
operator; and,
a first handle connected to the non-separable elongate tension bearing member
and a
second handle connected to the non-separable elongate tension bearing member,
the handles for
grasping by the passenger and for use in pulling of the non-separable elongate
tension bearing
member for providing tension therein;
wherein the non-separable elongate tension bearing member is absent a fastener

proximate opposite ends thereof for coupling the non-separable elongate
tension bearing member
to form a closed loop.


2. A tandem riding vehicle safety device as defined in claim 1 comprising an
adjuster
for adjusting the location of the connection between the first handle and the
non-separable
elongate tension bearing member.


3. A tandem riding vehicle safety device as defined in claim 2 comprising
another
adjuster for adjusting the location of the connection between the second
handle and the non-
separable elongate tension bearing member.


4. A tandem riding vehicle safety device as defined in claim 3 wherein the
other adjuster
for adjusting the location of the connection between the second handle and the
non-separable
elongate tension bearing member includes a release for automatically releasing
upon being
exposed to a tension above a threshold tension.


5. A tandem riding vehicle safety device as defined in claim 3 wherein the
adjuster for
adjusting the location of the connection between the first handle and the non-
separable elongate

9


tension bearing member includes a release for automatically releasing upon
being exposed to a
tension above a threshold tension.


6. A tandem riding vehicle safety device as defined in claim 1 wherein the
first and
second handles are disposed one each at the opposite ends of the non-separable
elongate tension
bearing member.


7. A tandem riding vehicle safety device as defined in claim 1 wherein the non-

separable elongate tension-bearing member is for floating in water.


8. A tandem riding vehicle safety device as defined in claim 7 wherein the non-

separable elongate tension-bearing member is a flotation assist device.


9. A tandem riding vehicle safety device as defined in claim 1 wherein the non-

separable elongate tension-bearing member comprises a flat length of flexible
material being
substantially wider in a direction perpendicular to its flatness and having a
width sufficient for
providing a reasonable force per unit area upon a tandem riding vehicle
operator during use.

10. A tandem riding vehicle safety device as defined in claim 9 wherein a
portion of the
non-separable elongate tension-bearing member is wider than another portion
thereof, the wider
portion for engaging a front of the tandem riding vehicle operator during use.


11. A tandem riding vehicle safety device as defined in claim 1 including a
flotation
device.


12. A tandem riding vehicle safety device comprising:
a non-separable elongate tension bearing member fabricated from a material
that
floats in water, for being pulled about a frontal portion of an operator so as
to releasably engage
the operator, the non-separable elongate tension bearing member having
opposite ends each
comprising grasping means for being grasped by a passenger that is seated
behind the operator.




13. A tandem riding vehicle safety device according to claim 12 wherein the
grasping
means comprise a first handle connected to a first end of the non-separable
elongate tension
bearing member and a second handle connected to a second end of the non-
separable elongate
tension bearing the member, the second end being opposite the first end.


11

Description

Note: Descriptions are shown in the official language in which they were submitted.



CA 02405355 2002-09-26

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Seamobile Safety Belt

Field of the Invention

[001] The field of invention relates to seamobile safety belt, and more
particular pertains to
a seamobile safety belt for manual grasping thereof by a passenger other than
the driver of a
seamobile.

Background of the Invention

[002] Safety belt structures for use with tandem riding vehicles have been
provided in the
prior art to permit a passenger of a motorcycle to grasp a handle arrangement
mounted to a belt
to be worn by a driver of the associated motorcycle. Unfortunately, the
problems associated with
tandem riders of a motorcycle, are different from those associated with tandem
riding of a
seamobile. For example, in a motorcycle accident, the rider and passenger are
generally thrown
clear of the motorcycle and have substantial resulting injuries. In seamobile
operation, it is
common to be thrown from the seamobile and end up in the water with little or
no injury. This is
part of what makes seamobiling so much fun.

[003] Unfortunately, a passenger of a seamobile generally must secure
themselves by
holding on to the driver. In cases where a driver and passenger fall into the
water, this may pose
a safety risk with the potential of drowning for several reasons. Firstly, the
passenger and
operator of the seamobile are very close together when the passenger is
directly secured to the
operator. As such, when thrown it is more likely the two will collide. Also,
because the
passenger may not let go of the operator once in the water, the operator may
be at risk of being
pulled under and drowning.

[004] Though an extrapolation of motorcycle seat belts to seamobiles may
appear obvious,
it is not so. The prior art motorcycle seat belts result in situations where
the driver of the
motorcycle has no control over the coupling between the driver and the
passenger. For water
sports, this results in a very hazardous situation and is therefore
undesirable.

[005] Examples of prior art devices for motorcycles may be found in U.S. Pat.
No.
4,413,358 to Jimenez wherein a fixed buckle arrangement secures opposed ends
of a first belt
2


CA 02405355 2002-09-26

Doc No 155-01 CA Patent
member thereto, wherein a second web portion mounted medially of the belt
member captures a
plurality of spaced handles in a fixed relationship relative to the belt
member. Unfortunately, the
belt is secured to the driver and as such, increases the risks outlined above
if used with a
seamobile. Once in the water, it is undesirable to be connected to loops that
might become
entangled or may be grasped by drowning victims during a time of panic.

[006] U.S. Pat. No. 3,896,499 to Kelly sets forth a relatively wide belt for
encircling outer
garments of a driver of a vehicle, wherein vertical flexible loops are
selectively secured and
grasped by a rider of the vehicle that is positioned rearwardly of the driver.
Unfortunately as
noted above, the belt is secured to the driver and as such, increases the
risks outlined above if
used with a seamobile.

[007] U.S. Pat. No. 4,396,013 to Hasslinger provides a flexible belt
arrangement for
encircling a mid-section of a driver of a tandemly seated vehicle, such as a
motorcycle, utilizing
a plurality of handles fixedly secured to the belt for grasping by a
passenger. Unfortunately as
noted above, the belt is secured to the driver and as such, increases the
risks outlined above if
used with a seamobile.

[008] U.S. Pat. No. 3,840,902 to McNeill sets forth a safety belt for
motorcycles utilizing a
rearwardly positioned shock-absorbing cushion to minimize impact between a
passenger and a
driver of a motorcycle, as well as fixedly mounting a handle positioned to
each side of the
motorcycle. Unfortunately as noted above, the belt is secured to the driver
and as such, increases
the risks outlined above if used with a seamobile.

[009] In U.S. Patent 5,081,719 in the name of Donnelly, there is provided a
motorcycle
safety belt arrangement permitting relative repositioning of handle structure
mounted to an
associated belt.

[0010] As noted above, for use in water, it is very unsafe to maintain a
connection between
two people during a fall. For example, if the above-described inventions were
used with a
seamobile and the passenger was unable to swim, the passenger would hold on
for dear life. This
can easily compromise the safety of the seamobile operator and result in
drowning. Therefore,
the above-mentioned devices are ill suited to operation in naval situations.

3


CA 02405355 2002-09-26

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[0011] It is an object of the present invention to provide a new and improved
safety belt for
use with seamobiles and the like that may be easily and efficiently
manufactured and marketed.
Summary of the Invention

[0012] In accordance with the invention there is provided a tandem riding
vehicle safety
device comprising:

an elongate tension bearing member having a width sufficient for providing a
reasonable force per unit area upon a tandem riding vehicle operator when
engaged therewith
and supporting a passenger of the tandem riding vehicle including a first end
and a second end
for, in use, being pulled about a front of an operator from both sides to
releasably secure a
passenger to the operator; a first handle connected to the member and a second
handle connected
to the member, the handles for grasping by the passenger and for use in
pulling of the elongate
tension bearing member for providing tension therein; and

absent a fastener proximate opposing ends of the member for coupling the
member to
form a closed loop.

[0013] In accordance with the invention there is further provided a flotation
device
comprising:
a flotation device for securing to a passenger of a tandem vehicle;
an elongate tension bearing member having a width sufficient for providing a
reasonable force per unit area upon a tandem riding vehicle operator when
engaged therewith
and supporting a passenger of the tandem riding vehicle including a first end
and a second end
for, in use, being pulled about a front of an operator from both sides to
releasably secure a
passenger to the operator; a first handle connected to the member and a second
handle connected
to the member, the handles for grasping by the passenger and for use in
pulling of the elongate
tension bearing member for providing tension therein; and

absent a high tension fastener for performing either of coupling the member to
the
operator of the vehicle and forming a closed loop about the operator of the
vehicle to fasten the
passenger to the operator.

4


CA 02405355 2009-07-20

Doc No 155-01 CA Patent
Brief Description of the Drawings

[0014] The invention will now be described with reference to the drawings
wherein:
[0015] FIG. 1 is an isometric illustration of a prior art motorcycle safety
belt arrangement.
[0016] FIG. 2 is a further prior art example of a safety belt arrangement
utilized in a vehicle
employing tandem passenger seats.

[0017] FIG. 3 is a view of a belt according to the invention for use with
seamobiles.
[0018] FIG. 4 is a view of the belt of Fig. 3 in operation.

[0019] FIG. 5 is a view of another belt according to the invention for use
with seamobiles.
[0020] FIG. 6 is a view of another belt according to the invention integrated
with a life
preserver.

[0021] FIG. 7 is a view of another belt according to the invention with one
portion wider
than another portion thereof.

Detailed Description of the Invention

[0022] FIG. 1 illustrates a prior art safety belt arrangement 1 for a
motorcycle, wherein a
flexible belt 2 includes an enlarged web 3 to capture a plurality of fixed
handles 4 between the
web and the belt structure, with the buckle portion 5 of the belt arranged for
securement to a
forward portion of an individual. FIG. 2 illustrates a further prior art
safety belt structure 6,
wherein a relatively wide belt 8 includes fixed handles 7 of flexible
construction mounted to rear
portions of the belt structure.

[0023] More specifically, the motorcycle safety belt apparatus 10 is typically
mounted to a
driver 12 of the tandem-riding vehicle 11 for manual grasping of a passenger
13. The safety belt
structure 10 essentially comprises a flexible belt web defined by a finite
length and formed of
interwoven fiber of polymeric construction or alternatively of a natural
flexible material, such as
leather, defined by an interior surface coextensive with an exterior surface.
The belt web is
defined by a predetermined and fixed cross-sectional configuration, including
a first end
cooperative with a second end to permit adjustable securement of the first and
second ends

, _ ,


CA 02405355 2009-07-20

Doc No 155-01 CA Patent
together in a rapid and easily operable manner. Further it should be noted
that the first and
second ends are arranged for securement about a back surface of an individual,
as opposed to the
forward portion of a driver's mid-section such that inadvertent disengagement
of the first and
second ends relative to one another maintains operative use of the belt
structure and minimizes
its disengagement from the driver.

[0024] Of course, fastening of a belt at the rearside of a driver, results in
a belt over which
the driver maintains little or no control. In the use of seamobiles, a
potential source of injury to
an operator is the passenger refusing to let go of the operator when they are
thrown into the water
thereby compromising the driver's safety and the driver's ability to swim. Of
course, though this
behaviour poses a danger to all involved and is not a best course of action,
panic often causes
frightened or drowning individuals to hold on and refuse to let go.

[0025] Water safety knowledge clearly indicates that holding a drowning victim
with one's
hands is undesirable since they may cause a rescuer harm or, even worse, to
drown. It is
preferable to rescue someone with a pole or a flotation device on a string.
Only as a last resort
should a professional water rescuer directly contact and retrieve a drowning
person. If this is the
case for water safety professionals, the warning should be all the more heeded
by amateurs and
thrill seekers.

[0026] For example, the belt shown in Fig. 1 is attached to the driver. Should
the handle
become caught while underwater, the driver would be maintained in a
compromised position.
Also, should the passenger be panicked, it is possible that the passenger will
not release one of
the handles resulting in the driver again having their safety compromised.

[0027) Another significant drawback of the prior art of Fig. 1 is that the
operator of the
motorcycle cannot detach the belt during operation of the motorcycle since the
fasteners are at
their back. Though, this is typically of little concern, during an accident or
when in the water,
should one handle be caught, the driver would be trapped potentially leading
to his death.

[0028] Referring to Fig. 3, an improved belt 30 according to the invention is
shown. The belt
30 includes an elongate tension-bearing member comprising a flat length of
flexible material
being substantially wider in a direction perpendicular to its flatness. The
belt 30 has a first end
31 and a second end 32 each including grasping means in the form of handles 33
and 34. The

6

~ . .~~.. , _. x.. . .. .. ,~.~... ~ ~ ..~.
CA 02405355 2009-07-20

= Doc No 155-01 CA Patent
belt 30 is absent a fastener to prevent its fastening to the operator of the
seamobile. As such, in
use, the belt 30 is placed about the front of the seamobile operator allowing
the handles 33 and
34 to protrude below the arms 41 and 42 of the operator 40 at their back 43 as
shown in Fig. 4.
[0029] A passenger on the seamobile grasps the handles in order to more
comfortably remain
seated and secured to the seamobile. Typically, it is generally desired that
the handles be
positioned about the rear mid-section of the driver in use, but may
alternatively be positioned
rearwardly thereof for convenient grasping by a passenger.

[0030] Should an unfortunate event such as an accident occur, releasing of one
of the two
handles results in no substantial linkage between the operator and the
passenger allowing them
each to be thrown free of each other. Advantageously, the safety device
comprises adjusters for
adjusting the location of the connection between handles and the non-separable
elongate tension
bearing member, the adjusters including a system for automatically releasing
upon being
exposed to a tension above a threshold tension. Similarly, the operator at
anytime may choose to
slide themselves out from the belt, when possible, in order to free themselves
of the passenger;
this typically will happen when the operator and passenger are both in the
water. Also,
significantly, it is difficult for an operator of the seamobile to become
pinned by the belt since
this would require pinning of both opposing ends of the belt at or about a
same time.

[0031] Referring to Fig. 5, another seamobile belt is shown. Here, the belt 30
has a two
Velcro tabs 51 for securing to mating portions on the operator of the
seamobile, preferably at
the sides of the operator. The use of coupling provides comfort in releasing
the seatbelt without
losing of same. This is advantages during passenger changes or while waiting.

[0032] Referring to Fig. 7, another seamobile belt is shown. Here, a portion
of the elongate
tension-bearing member of the belt 70 is wider than another portion thereof.
In particular, the
wider portion is for engaging a front of the seamobile operator during use.

[0033] Though the above description refers to a seamobile belt, it is equally
applicable to all
tandem-riding vehicles such as snowmobiles, motorcycles, etc. For seamobiles,
the advantages
are apparent since there is a real risk of drowning should two people remain
attached together.
Of course, many of the snowmobiling deaths that occur in Canada and the United
States relate to

7

~~.~ .
_ -._.4..a ._. .
CA 02405355 2009-07-20

Doc No 155-01 CA Patent
drowning when a snowmobile breaks through thin ice. In these situations, the
above-described
device is again advantageous.

[0034] Additionally advantageously, the device is useful in rescuing of
passengers should
potential drowning situations occur. For example, an operator grasps the
device to pull a
passenger to shore without requiring physical contact with the passenger.
According to common
water safety knowledge this is a relatively safe form of water rescue
procedure for the passenger
and for the rescuer.

[0035] Preferably, the seatbelt of the present invention is formed in a
fashion that it floats.
Otherwise, there is a potential to lose the belt each time a passenger falls
from a seamobile.
[0036] More preferably, it is formed as a flotation assist device for use in
water rescue or by
someone who cannot swim well. As such, it is useful by the passenger, by the
operator, by either
the passenger or operator in saving the other and also by other water rescue
personnel.

[0037] Referring to Fig. 6, shown is a flotation device in the form of a life
jacket 60
including a strap 30 having two handles 33 and 34 for use in securing a
passenger to an operator
of a seamobile. Here, the strap 30 is stored within a pocket 62 of the life
jacket 60 when not in
use. Advantageously, this protects the passenger and the operator. Preferably,
the strap 30 is not
tightly secured to the life jacket 60 such that it comes free during a
collision. In Fig. 6, this is
accomplished by using a Velcro connection 64 between the belt 30 and the
pocket 62.

[0038] Of course, the handle 34 is optional and may be excluded when passenger
comfort
does not so require.

[0039] Further, in the use of motorcycles, snowmobiles and seamobiles, a
potential source of
injury is the passenger colliding with the driver during a safety related
maneuver or during an
accident, for example, when being thrown from the vehicle. The present
invention reduces those
risks due to the very loose coupling between operator and passenger.

[0040] The foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of
the invention.
Further, since numerous modifications and changes will readily occur to those
skilled in the art,
it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and
operation shown and
described, and accordingly, all suitable modifications and equivalents may be
resorted to, falling
within the scope of the invention.

8
, , .

Representative Drawing
A single figure which represents the drawing illustrating the invention.
Administrative Status

For a clearer understanding of the status of the application/patent presented on this page, the site Disclaimer , as well as the definitions for Patent , Administrative Status , Maintenance Fee  and Payment History  should be consulted.

Administrative Status

Title Date
Forecasted Issue Date 2010-02-23
(22) Filed 2002-09-26
(41) Open to Public Inspection 2003-04-12
Examination Requested 2007-09-12
(45) Issued 2010-02-23
Deemed Expired 2016-09-26

Abandonment History

There is no abandonment history.

Payment History

Fee Type Anniversary Year Due Date Amount Paid Paid Date
Application Fee $150.00 2002-09-26
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 2 2004-09-27 $50.00 2004-09-24
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 3 2005-09-26 $50.00 2005-09-21
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 4 2006-09-26 $50.00 2006-09-26
Request for Examination $400.00 2007-09-12
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 5 2007-09-26 $100.00 2007-09-12
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 6 2008-09-26 $100.00 2008-09-10
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 7 2009-09-28 $100.00 2009-09-21
Final Fee $150.00 2009-12-10
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 8 2010-09-27 $100.00 2010-09-02
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 9 2011-09-26 $100.00 2011-09-22
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 10 2012-09-26 $125.00 2012-09-18
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 11 2013-09-26 $125.00 2013-09-25
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 12 2014-09-26 $125.00 2014-09-26
Owners on Record

Note: Records showing the ownership history in alphabetical order.

Current Owners on Record
ROSS, WILLIAM
Past Owners on Record
None
Past Owners that do not appear in the "Owners on Record" listing will appear in other documentation within the application.
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Document
Description 
Date
(yyyy-mm-dd) 
Number of pages   Size of Image (KB) 
Abstract 2002-09-26 1 21
Drawings 2002-09-26 4 42
Representative Drawing 2002-12-12 1 3
Cover Page 2003-03-17 1 33
Description 2002-09-26 7 362
Claims 2002-09-26 4 140
Drawings 2009-07-20 5 47
Claims 2009-07-20 3 106
Description 2009-07-20 7 383
Representative Drawing 2010-01-27 1 3
Cover Page 2010-01-27 1 33
Assignment 2002-09-26 2 67
Prosecution-Amendment 2007-11-05 1 24
Fees 2004-09-24 1 26
Fees 2005-09-21 1 24
Fees 2006-09-26 1 25
Prosecution-Amendment 2007-09-12 1 24
Fees 2007-09-12 1 24
Fees 2008-09-10 1 24
Prosecution-Amendment 2009-01-21 2 64
Prosecution-Amendment 2009-07-20 15 645
Correspondence 2009-12-10 1 26
Fees 2010-09-02 1 200
Fees 2011-09-22 1 163
Fees 2012-09-18 1 163
Fees 2013-09-25 1 33
Fees 2014-09-26 1 33
Correspondence 2015-11-27 2 106