By Angela Greenwood

Each year, thousands of elderly suffer from hip fractures that greatly affect their quality of life, but new technology may soon be used to change that. It’s called Hip’Air and it’s a belt equipped with two airbags on each side that deploy as a person is falling.

The invention was recently spotlighted at this week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The company that created it says the product not only prevents hip fractures but can also save lives in the long run.

It’s the hippest wearable out there for the elderly- a belt that inflates when you fall. Hip’Air debuted Monday at the Consumer Electronics Show, featuring an accelerometer and gyroscope in the belt that can detect a fall and trigger a co2 canister inside the belt.

The futuristic technology was developed in France over the last ten years to fight a very serious problem plaguing senior citizens.

According to founding company ‘Helite,’ in the United States, more than 300,000 people break their hips each year. 23% of those over 55 years old who do, die within the first year of the fracture.

But, Hip’Air brings a solution, said to offer extensive and reusable hip protection. The belt inflates even before a person hits the ground, as a fall is detected within 200 milliseconds.

Before a second is even up, the airbag inflates, reducing the impact of a fall nearly 90 percent, the company claims.

Hip’Air will be sold in Europe this spring and will hit shelves in the U.S. in September, and it’s not cheap. Hip’Air runs 800 Euros, or about $950.

Angela Greenwood

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