Title:
Flood protection device, system and mothed therefor
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A flood protection device, system and method. The flood protection device consists of an elongated liquid-tight container, which may be filled through a nozzle thereon. The container is secured to the ground where needed by at least one stake, which stake is coupled to at least one eyelet located on the container. The container is preferably formed of polyvinyl chloride. The container may be filled, and emptied, on-site.



Inventors:
Page, Harry B. (Henderson, NV, US)
Application Number:
09/783171
Publication Date:
08/15/2002
Filing Date:
02/15/2001
Assignee:
PAGE HARRY B.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
405/110
International Classes:
E02B3/10; (IPC1-7): E02B3/10
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
LAGMAN, FREDERICK LYNDON
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WEISS & MOY, P.C. (4455 E. CAMELBACK ROAD SUITE E-261, PHOENIX, AZ, 85018, US)
Claims:

I claim:



1. An improved flood protection device comprising, in combination: an elongated and substantially liquid-tight container; wherein said container is comprised of polyvinyl chloride; a nozzle positioned on an exterior surface of said liquid-tight container and opening into an interior surface of said liquid-tight container and adapted to permit the filling of said water-tight container with a liquid; and an eyelet coupled to said exterior surface of said liquid-tight container.

2. The improved flood protection device of claim 1 further comprising a reinforcement layer of polyvinyl chloride positioned below said nozzle.

3. The improved flood protection device of claim 1 wherein said liquid-tight container has a thickness of about 40 millimeters.

4. The improved flood protection device of claim 2 wherein said reinforcement layer has a thickness of about 66 millimeters.

5. An improved flood protection system comprising, in combination: an elongated and substantially liquid-tight container; wherein said container is comprised of polyvinyl chloride; a nozzle positioned on an exterior surface of said liquid-tight container and opening into an interior surface of said liquid-tight container and adapted to permit the filling of said water-tight container with a liquid; an eyelet coupled to said exterior surface of said liquid-tight container; a stake; and a cord adapted to couple said stake to said eyelet.

6. The system of claim 5 further comprising a reinforcement layer of polyvinyl chloride positioned below said nozzle.

7. The system of claim 5 wherein said liquid-tight container has a thickness of about 40 millimeters.

8. The system of claim 6 wherein said reinforcement layer has a thickness of about 66 millimeters.

9. A method for protecting against a flood comprising: providing an elongated and substantially liquid-tight container; wherein said container is comprised of polyvinyl chloride; positioning a nozzle on an exterior surface of said liquid-tight container and opening into an interior surface of said liquid-tight container; filling said water-tight container through said nozzle with a liquid; coupling an eyelet to said exterior surface of said liquid-tight container; providing a stake; providing a cord; and coupling said stake to said eyelet with said cord.

10. The method of claim 9 further comprising providing a reinforcement layer of polyvinyl chloride positioned below said nozzle.

11. The method of claim 9 wherein said liquid-tight container has a thickness of about 40 millimeters.

12. The method of claim 10 wherein said reinforcement layer has a thickness of about 66 millimeters.

13. The method of claim 9 wherein coupling an eyelet to said exterior surface of said liquid-tight container comprises gluing said eyelet to said exterior surface.

14. The method of claim 9 wherein coupling an eyelet to said exterior surface of said liquid-tight container comprises heat welding said eyelet to said exterior surface.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] This invention relates generally to flood protection devices, systems and methods therefor and, more specifically, to an improved flood protection device consisting of an elongated PVC bag and adapted to be filled with water and secured to the ground.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] Particularly with the widespread flooding of the Mississippi River in the 1990's, the public's consciousness has been raised about the need for improved protection against flooding. Areas where it was thought that there could never be flooding were affected, causing people to give new attention to the need to be able to respond quickly and effectively to a flooding threat.

[0003] Permanent flood protection devices such as levies are well known. However, it is often necessary to create a temporary, emergency barrier to flooding. Historically, the emergency barrier of choice has been the sandbag. However, sandbags have a number of drawbacks. They are extremely labor intensive and time-consuming to fill and transport to the site where they are to be used. Moreover, suitable fill material may not always be available in sufficient quantity. Still further, when the bags are no longer needed, a way must be found to dispose of and/or remove the fill material—another time-consuming and labor intensive activity and one that will require the presence of a suitable dumping area for the fill material.

[0004] A need existed for a flood protection device, system and method wherein the device can be more easily, quickly and securely positioned where needed , Still further, a need existed for a flood protection device and method based on relatively easy to use—and dispose of—fill material. And a need existed for a flood protection device and method that can be relatively easily removed and stored when no longer needed.

[0005] The present invention addresses these needs and provides other, related, advantages.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0006] An object of the present invention is to provide an improved flood protection device and method that can be positioned where needed in a manner that is relatively quicker, easier and more secure than with prior art devices and methods.

[0007] A further object of the present invention is to provide an improved flood protection device that can be relatively easily removed and stored when no longer needed.

[0008] A still further object of the present invention is to provide an improved flood protection device that utilizes a readily available, and readily disposable, fill material.

[0009] A further object of the present invention is to provide an improved flood protection system.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0010] In accordance with one embodiment of the present invention, an improved flood protection device is disclosed. The device comprises, in combination: an elongated and substantially liquid-tight container; wherein the container is comprised of polyvinyl chloride; a nozzle positioned on an exterior surface of the liquid-tight container and opening into an interior surface of the liquid-tight container and adapted to permit the filling of the water-tight container with a liquid; and an eyelet coupled to the exterior surface of the liquid-tight container.

[0011] In accordance with another embodiment of the present invention, an improved flood protection system is disclosed. The system comprises, in combination: an elongated and substantially liquid-tight container; wherein the container is comprised of polyvinyl chloride; a nozzle positioned on an exterior surface of the liquid-tight container and opening into an interior surface of the liquid-tight container and adapted to permit the filling of the water-tight container with a liquid; an eyelet coupled to the exterior surface of the liquid-tight container; a stake; and a cord adapted to couple the stake to the eyelet.

[0012] In accordance with still another embodiment of the present invention, a method for protecting against a flood is disclosed. The method comprises: providing an elongated and substantially liquid-tight container; wherein the container is comprised of polyvinyl chloride; positioning a nozzle on an exterior surface of the liquid-tight container and opening into an interior surface of the liquid-tight container; filling the water-tight container through the nozzle with a liquid; coupling an eyelet to the exterior surface of the liquid-tight container; providing a stake; providing a cord; and coupling the stake to the eyelet with the cord.

[0013] The foregoing and other objects, features, and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the following, more particular description of the preferred embodiments of the invention, as illustrated in the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0014] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the flood protection device and system of the present invention, in use.

[0015] FIG. 2 is a side view of the flood protection device of the present invention.

[0016] FIG. 3 is a side, partially cross- sectional view, of the nozzle located on the elongated, liquid-tight container portion of the device of the present invention, showing the use of reinforcement material thereunder.

[0017] FIG. 4 is a side, cross-sectional of the eyelet located on the elongated, liquid-tight container portion of the device of the present invention.

[0018] FIG. 5 is a perspective view of the liquid-tight container in an empty condition, showing folded for storage,

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0019] Referring first to FIGS. 1-2 and 5, the flood protection device 10 of the present invention is shown. The main component portions of the flood protection device 10 are a nozzle 12 (shown in detail in FIG. 3), at least one eyelet 14 (shown in detail in FIG. 4), and an elongated, liquid-tight container 16 (hereinafter “container 16”). These components will now be addressed in more detail.

[0020] Beginning with the container 16, it is manufactured from a durable, liquid-tight, flexible material such as polyvinyl chloride. A preferred thickness for a container 16 comprised of polyvinyl chloride would be in the range of approximately 40 millimeters.

[0021] Affixed to the container 16 is a nozzle 12. It is through the nozzle 12 that liquid is passed into—and out of—the container 16. Preferably, as shown in detail in FIG. 3, at least one layer of reinforcement material 18 is positioned below said nozzle -either on the exterior surface of the container 16, the interior surface of the container 16, or both. The reinforcement material 18 is preferably polyvinyl chloride. It preferably has a thickness in the range of approximately 66 millimeters.

[0022] Also affixed to the container 16 is at least one eyelet 14. The eyelet 14 may be affixed in any desired manner, including by gluing or, preferably, heat welding.

Statement of Operation

[0023] Referring now to FIG. 1, the use of the flood protection device 10 will be illustrated, The flood protection device 10 will preferably be placed with the container 16 in an empty condition in the area where it is to be used to provide flood protection benefits. It is preferred to transport the flood protection device 10 when empty because, when filled with water or other liquid, it will be sufficiently heavy so as to render it difficult or impractical to move.

[0024] Once in position, the container 16 is filled with water or other liquid being inserted through the nozzle 12. In this regard, the water to be used need not be potable, and indeed could even be pumped from the body of water that is threatening to create the flood condition.

[0025] After the nozzle 12 is closed, it will be desired to secure the container 16 into position. To do so, a user will place at least one stake 20 in the ground proximate the container 16. The stake 20 will be secured to an eyelet 14 with a cord 22, comprising any suitable securing material such as rope, twine, cable, chain, etc. (It would be possible to couple a single Stake 20 to more than one eyelet 14, or a plurality of stakes 20 to a single eyelet 14.) The stake 20/eyelet 14 combination is necessary, to protect against the floating away of the container 16 by more securely anchoring it to the ground.

[0026] When the flood protection device 10 is no longer needed, the water or other liquid is evacuated through the nozzle 12. (If desired, separately inlet and outlet nozzles 12 can be provided.) Where the fill material is water, it will often be possible to simple pour it out in the area where the flood protection device 10 was used, with the water being soaked into the ground, evaporating, or entering a nearby body of water. When the container 16 is empty, it can be folded up for storage purposes, for example in the manner shown in FIG. 5.

[0027] While the invention has been particularly shown and described with reference to preferred embodiments thereof, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that the foregoing and other changes in form and details may be made therein without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.