Title:
Device for identifying and locating individuals and method of using
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A device and method for locating and identifying individuals. The device includes at least two bands, one band to be worn by an individual being monitored, the second band to be worn by the individual performing the monitoring of the individual wearing the first band. The bands include corresponding indicia, such as color. One band is preferably made from a reflective material. The method includes the monitoring and monitored individuals wearing bands and comparing the identification on the bands to correlate the individuals. In one embodiment, index numbers are used on the bands to permit correlation of the band worn by the monitored individual with the band worn by the monitoring individual.



Inventors:
Ciarrocchi, Peter (Philadelphia, PA, US)
Application Number:
10/871744
Publication Date:
02/17/2005
Filing Date:
06/18/2004
Assignee:
CIARROCCHI PETER
Primary Class:
International Classes:
G09F3/00; (IPC1-7): A44C5/00
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Primary Examiner:
HOGE, GARY CHAPMAN
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Volpe And, Koenig P. C. (UNITED PLAZA, SUITE 1600, PHILADELPHIA, PA, 19103, US)
Claims:
1. A device for locating and identifying at least one individual comprising: a first band worn by at least one individual being monitored; and a second band worn by at least one monitoring individual.

2. The device of claim 1, wherein the first band and second band are substantially the same color.

3. The device of claim 1, wherein the first band is worn by a monitored individual around the neck.

4. The device of claim 1 wherein the first band includes a reflective material.

5. The device of claim 1 wherein the first band is constructed from materials that do not dissolve when exposed to liquids composed essentially of water.

6. The device of claim 1 wherein the first band and second bands are adjustable.

7. The device of claim 1 wherein the first and second bands are discontinuous, each having a first end and a second end, the first and second ends secured to one another to form a continuous band.

8. The device of claim 1 wherein the first end and second end are secured to one another through a pressure sensitive adhesive.

9. A kit comprising a plurality of first bands to be worn by at least one individual to be monitored and a plurality of second bands to be worn by at least one individual performing monitoring of monitored individuals, the first bands and second bands having substantially the same colors, the first bands displaying identification indicia and the second bands displaying identification indicia corresponding to the first bands.

10. The kit of claim 9 further comprising a display device separate from the first bands which identifies the indicia of the first bands.

11. A method for locating and identifying individuals to be monitored by at least one monitoring individual, comprising the steps of: providing at least one individual to be monitored with a first band, the first band including an identification; providing at least one individual who is monitoring the monitored individual with a second band, the second band including an identification that is the same as the identification on the first band; and comparing the identification on the first band with the identification on the second band to verify the relationship between the monitoring individual and the monitored individual.

12. The method of claim 11 wherein the corresponding identification of the first and second bands is that the bands are of the same color.

13. The method of claim 11 wherein the corresponding identification of the first and second bands is index numbers on the bands that are the same.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

The present application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 60/480,116, filed Jun. 19, 2003. That application is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety.

TECHNICAL FIELD

The present invention relates to an article and method for identifying and locating persons.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

When monitoring individuals in a public venue, there is a need to be easily able to both identify and locate one or more such individuals, particularly when the individuals are children, physically infirm or mentally impaired. Such monitoring can serve to prevent the individuals from departing from an area in which they are being monitored by a monitoring individual. The monitoring can also assist in locating individuals who may have wandered away from a site at which they can be monitored.

In addition, there is a need to be able to readily distinguish monitored individuals from other individuals who may be in the vicinity of the monitored individuals. For example, the monitored individuals may be part of a crowd of other individuals, making it difficult for a monitoring person to easily locate and identify the monitored individuals. In such a circumstance, it can be difficult for a monitoring individual to readily pick out one or more monitored individuals from the other individuals within a crowd. For example, a child on a beach, in or near a swimming pool or at a playground, could wander away from a monitoring individual. As another example, a child may remain within the vicinity of a monitoring person, but still be difficult to identify or locate as a result of a crowd of others surrounding the child or interposed between the child and the monitoring individual.

This need to be able to readily identify or locate individuals, may involve only a single individual or multiple individuals, such as individuals making up a group undertaking a single activity.

The need to monitor the identity and locations of individuals, may arise when the monitored individuals are not fully responsible, such as children. The need may also arise when the monitored individuals are adults. The elderly or infirm, for instance, though less likely to stray from a monitoring site than children, may be placed in physical jeopardy if unable to return to the monitoring site once they have strayed.

While apparatus and methods for monitoring the location and identity of individuals may be available, they may not offer relatively low cost, conspicuousness and ease of deployment for both the monitored and monitoring individuals. Still other devices or methods of identifying individuals may be less effective to the extent that a monitored individual is difficult to locate in a crowd. These devices or methods may therefore be relatively ineffective if the complete view of the monitored individual is partially obscured. For example, such devices or methods may be less effective if the monitored individual is partially submerged in water.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present intention is directed to a set of bands to be worn by individuals who are being monitored and a corresponding band or bands to be worn by at least one individual who is monitoring the individuals to be monitored. The bands worn by those being monitored and the bands worn by those performing the monitoring are of preferably matching colors, with the bands worn by those being monitored, preferably made of a highly reflective material.

A monitoring individual can perform keep track of the monitored individuals using the present invention by visually observing the monitored individuals wearing the corresponding identification bands. The identification bands preferably display unique index numbers. The unique index numbers are also recorded on a card or similar recording device, permitting the monitoring individual to readily account for the monitored individuals.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

For the purpose of illustrating the invention, there is shown in the drawings various forms that are presently preferred, it being understood, however, that this invention is not limited to the precise arrangements and constructions shown.

FIGS. 1A-1C are isometric views of the bands showing two indexed bands that two monitored individuals wear and a third band that a monitoring individual wears.

FIG. 2 is a front elevational view of a card containing the index numbers of the monitored bands shown in FIG. 1.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

While the invention will be described in connection with one or more preferred embodiments, it will be understood that it is not intended to limit the invention to any particular embodiment. On the contrary, it is intended to cover all alternatives, modifications, and equivalents as may be included within the spirit and scope of the invention as defined by the appended claims.

Certain terminology is used herein for convenience only and is not to be taken as a limitation on the invention. Particularly, words such as “upper,” “lower,” “left,” “right,” “horizontal,” “vertical,” “upward,” and “downward” merely describe the configuration shown in the figures.

Referring to FIGS. 1A-1C wherein like reference numbers denote like elements, there are two bands 2a and 2b for wearing by two monitored individuals. These monitored bands display index numbers or other indicia 3a and 3b. Each monitored band includes a first end 10a and a second end 10b. The second end 10b includes an adhesive 6, such as a releasable, pressure sensitive adhesive. The bands can be made from any suitable materials, such as plastic, paper, metal, etc. In one embodiment, the material is one that is not easily removable, such as TYVEK material, which is a high-density polyethylene fiberous material that is vapor-permeable, yet water-, chemical-, puncture-, tear- and abrasion-resistant. TYVEK material is available from E.I. DuPont De Nemours, Wilmington, Del.

When the bands 2a and 2b are placed on an individual to be monitored, the monitored bands are secured in place by contacting first end 10a against second end 10b and applying moderate pressure. The bands 2a and 2b are preferably worn around the neck and throat of a monitored individual so that it is easily visible. Thus, the size of the bands is preferably sufficient enough to permit a band to extend around the neck of the monitored individual without being easily removed over the individual's head. Since the present invention has applicability beyond children, it is contemplated that the bands can be sized for different individuals, e.g., toddlers, youth, adults. The bands can also be made so as to be adjustable. The monitoring band 14 is preferably worn around a wrist, upper or lower arm or forehead of a monitoring individual. Thus, the monitoring band 14 should be smaller than the monitored bands 2a, 2b.

In a preferred embodiment of the invention, the band worn by the monitoring individual 14 is the same color as the bands 2a and 2b worn by the monitored individuals, with the monitored bands fashioned from a reflective material.

Referring to FIG. 2, a card or other display device 8 displays index numbers or indicia 16a and 16b, corresponding to the index numbers or indicia 3a and 3b of the monitored bands of FIGS. 1A-1C. A monitoring individual would refer to card 8 and the index numbers or indicia 16a and 16b recorded thereon to confirm the identity, location or number of monitored individuals.

The previously described versions of the invention have many advantages, including ready visual recognition of monitored individuals who have moved away from a monitored location. Another advantage is ready visual identification of monitored individuals who, though remaining in a monitored location, are within a crowd of other non-monitored individuals.

It will be appreciated that the relatively low cost of the present invention, ease of deployment on both monitored and monitoring individuals and ease with which the invention permits identification, contribute to the effectiveness of the present invention for locating and identifying individuals requiring monitoring.

Although the present invention has been described in considerable detail with reference to certain preferred versions thereof, other versions are possible. For example, the bands need not rely on an adhesive alone to secure their ends. Furthermore, it may be desirable to include an adhesive or other securing device that cannot be easily removed, such as a permanent adhesive. Other possible means for securing the ends include fasteners and clasps. Index numbers corresponding to the monitored bands can be recorded on media other than cards, such as electronic devices, dry erase boards or other recordable media.

Although the invention has been described and illustrated with respect to the exemplary embodiments thereof, it should be understood by those skilled in the art that the foregoing and various other changes, omissions and additions may be made therein and thereto, without parting from the spirit and scope of the present invention.





 
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