RaftUp Technologies, a Little Rock startup, has been selected as one of the Phase I winners for the U.S. Coast Guard’s Ready for Rescue Challenge. For the challenge, RaftUp developed the AdventureSafe public safety platform, and as a Phase I winner, the company will receive $5,000.
Five Phase I prize winners were selected by a panel of judges along with 16 honorable mention award winners.
The U.S. Coast Guard Ready for Rescue Challenge invites innovators to submit a concept for solutions that will help the organization locate people in the water. The challenge is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T), along with the U.S. Coast Guard Research and Development Center (RDC).
“We couldn’t be more excited about the opportunity, and this is something that we have been working hard for – this is an opportunity like this so this just proves that there is a need for our solution out there,” Corey Boelkens, CEO of RaftUp Technologies, says.
The AdventureSafe public safety platform integrates with an outdoor recreation application called RaftUp. RaftUp is a free app that can be downloaded in the Google Play Store (Android) and App Store (iPhone). This app features an SOS emergency alert button which, once activated, will alert the emergency dispatch center whose dispatchers are actively monitoring the AdventureSafe Platform. The public safety officer will then receive the caller’s exact GPS location, which continuously updates as they move, whether by land or by water.
All Phase I winners have been invited to participate in Phase II of the competition, where they will pitch their solution in a “Piranha Pool” to compete for a total prize pool of $120,000. The Phase II prize pool will assist the Phase II winners in developing their concept into a working protype.
In Phase III, the Coast Guard will field test prototypes alongside standard USCG-approved safety equipment. At the conclusion of Phase III, the judging panel will award a total of $110,000 in additional monetary prizes.