Safeguarding Utility Workers: UI Grads Create Device to Reduce Electrocution Deaths
Becky Kramer | The Spokesman-Review
Thirty thousand dollars seemed like a fortune to the three University of Idaho graduates.
Tim Ledford, Brandon Bledsoe and John Thompson developed a safety device that utility workers clip onto their hard hats. It beeps and flashes when workers approach a high-voltage electrical source, reducing the risk of electrocution.
During their senior year, the men racked up multiple honors and $30,000 in prize money in business entrepreneur competitions. The graduates figured the money would cover the initial costs of launching their startup, Safeguard Equipment Inc.
“We were three 21-year-olds with money in the bank,” said Ledford, Safeguard’s chief executive. “We thought we could bootstrap the company.”
But getting the product to market was harder – and more costly – than they anticipated…(Read the full story)