August 11, 2010

Hot Dots and Heat Stroke

Predicting Danger by Degrees

I'm watching the noon news and am excited to learn that a Lexington company has developed a product -- a round patch about the size of a silver dollar that adheres to the skin -- that changes color to indicate that a person's core temperature is high enough to cause heat stroke or heat exhaustion.

The company, Ionx International, named the product Body Alert Temperature Patch, which is descriptive, but it quickly gained the nickname Hot Dot. The couple who owns the company have extensive experience in textiles and in chemistry. Partly due to encouragement from a former governor of Kentucky following the death of a Louisville high school football player who suffered heat stroke during practice, they set aside other projects to concentrate on this life-saving device.

Testing has been done not only with student athletes but with the military. Other potential markets are construction workers, highway maintenance workers, roofers; farm workers -- everyone involved in intense outdoor activity.

But the big deal here for me and for others is that Ionx has developed a simple, low-cost method for saving the lives of our children and grandchildren. My grandson in North Carolina runs track. The love of my life works for Insight Broadband, whose employees (like all the telecommunication people, power company employees, sanitation workers) have performed physical labor outside all summer with a heat index over 100 degrees.

Let's all spread the word -- and let's start with our local high school coaches.

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