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Award winning surf-rescue vehicle


June 4, 2004

The Australian Design Awards tour reaches Queensland this week and as part of our ongoing coverage Gizmo this week takes a look at the 2002 "Gold" winner of the Student Design Awards - "Goldie", the world's first handheld electric Surf Rescue Vehicle (SRV). Goldie is a safe and inexpensive electric SRV concept designed to give life-saving organizations greater access to effective rescue equipment. Weighing just 10-15 kg and reaching speeds of 10-15 km/h, Goldie will be safer than inflatable rubber boats and jet skis - which travel at 30-50km/h and have been known to cause accidents while rescuing swimmers - as well as costing around one tenth of the price. The electrically powered SRV can run for up to 5 hours before recharging is required and is better for the environment than petrol powered vehicles as well as being able to travel underwater and importantly, beneath waves. Goldie's foam filled fibreglass body is ridden by lying face first and gripping handles on either side of the front section, a bit like a boogie board with a motor. The designer, Paul Manczak of Monash University, liased with Surf Lifesaving Victoria to ensure that the SRV meets all safety, manoeuvrability and ergonomic requirements.

About the Author
Mike Hanlon Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, Telstra.com.au (Australia's largest Telco), Seek.com.au (Australia's largest employment site), top100.com.au, hitwise.com, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks. All articles by Mike Hanlon
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