A New Kind of Water Rescue Boat

We all know that airboats are great for making adrenaline pumping action scenes in movies, but that’s not all they’re good for.  As this man shows us, they are ideal for making water rescues during floods and natural disaster situations.

What makes them so good?  Well, since they are driven by a propeller above water, there is no motor below the surface to get stuck on debris and damaged by shallow rocks.  For these reasons they have been used for water rescues in the United States for a long time.

However, Mr. Sasaki has made some major improvements.  He has designed and built his airboat from scratch with some notable features.  First, there is a large scooper at the front of the craft, which allows the driver to quickly and easily bring someone out in the water, into the boat.  Compare this to trying to drag victims onboard, and it’s easy to see what a huge advantage this is.

Also, it has a self-correcting device that will right the boat in case it gets capsized.  In rough weather, this could mean the difference between lives saved and lives lost.

It seems like floods are becoming more and more common these days, and an innovation such as this could really help us turn the tides on mother nature.

Here’s the original synopsis:

水害から命を救え…世界初の救助機能を持ったエアボート

東日本大震災では、津波・濁流に飲みこまれ大切な命を失った人たちや、家の屋根・電信柱につかまり長い時間、救助を待った人たちが多くいた。そこで、「世界初の救助機能を備えたエアボート」を製作し、水害から人命を救おうと、宮城県登米市出身の佐々木甲さんという技術者が立ち上がった。「エアボート」はアメリカではレジャー用・救助用として一般的だが、日本にはほとんどないと言う。そこで自らエアボートの製作に挑み、しかも、「水面から人をすくい上げる装置」と「転覆しても自動的に復元する装置」という世界初の画期的な装置も備えようというのだ。

Here it is in English:

Saving Lives in Water Disasters…The World’s First Life-Saving Airboat

During the Tohoku Earthquate there were many precious lives swallowed up and lost in the tsunami and muddy streams.  There were also many people left for long periods of time clinging to rooftops and light poles waiting for help.  It was there that Mr. Kabuto Sasaki, from Touma City in Miyagi Prefecture, stood up and produced the world’s first airboat equipped with life-saving functionalities.  Airboats are commonly used in America for leisure, and for rescue, but they are almost non-existent in Japan.  Mr. Sasaki manufactured this airboat himself.  Not only that, this boat aims to produce some revolutionary features that the world has never seen before such as an apparatus that scoops people from the water, and the ability to automatically correct itself if it capsizes.

Check out the video: