Maxim Integrated Awards Best Automation and Robotics Award to Fire Fighting Buddy

June 9, 2017

Fighting Fire With…Teddy Bears?

Did you know that 80% of children don’t respond to smoke detectors during a fire? Neither did we – not at least until we heard from Drew Biller, grade six from Dag Hammarskjold Middle School in Wallingford, Connecticut.

Whether students aren’t waking up in the first place, or are waking up but are too scared or confused to properly respond, Drew concluded that 10% of fires result in death or injury to children, in large part due to the inefficacy of fire alarms for kids that age.

Ten percent.

What’s more, during fires, children are far more likely to experience difficulty in quickly and safely exiting their homes, meaning that they’re disproportionately in need of rescue from firemen during fires.

Seeing great need, Drew decided to do something about it.

The Fire Fighting Buddy

Drew managed to take down three birds with a single stone…er, teddy bear. The Fire Fighting Buddy is wirelessly linked to the smoke detectors within a home, and plays a prerecorded message from a loved one giving directions in the event of a fire. This means that not only are children more likely to hear the message, since the teddy bear is right in bed with them; but that they’ll be receiving direct instructions from a voice they trust. This is especially imperative in situations in which children are alone at home, cases in which they might not understand what a fire alarm means.

The Fire Fighting Buddy is also trackable by fire departments to help locate children during a fire; this is exceptionally important, as children are particularly likely to require rescue from firefighters during house fires.

And the third thing? The Fire Fighting Buddy comes pre-equipped in a big, fuzzy teddy bear, making it unthreatening to children. Who doesn’t love teddy bears?!

The Fire Fighting Buddy is a truly innovative invention; but don’t take our word for it – just see Drew as she demonstrates its use!

Maxim Integrated, an internationally recognized technology company specializing in the design, manufacture, and distribution of semiconductors, awarded Drew Biller a top prize at the National Invention Convention and Entrepreneurship Expo – The Best Automation and Robotics Award. Maxim Integrated is a fervent supporter of youth invention and innovation, and is a broad and generous contributor to education globally. More on Maxim Integrated’s commitment to education and community support can be found here:


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