An inventor is turning his sister's near-fatal bicycle crash into a positive by engineering a helmet that will both protect and be worn due to its stylish design.
David Hall and his business partner, two former SpaceX engineers, came up with the Park & Diamond helmet after Hall's sister was hit by a car and left with severe head trauma.
The Temple University student was not wearing a helmet during the crash that left her in a coma for four months.
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"What really came out of that while she was recovering and continuing to recover is just the question: why wouldn't she wear a bike helmet?" Hall said.
He and his partner set about designing a helmet that they hoped would actually be used while still helping cyclists during crashes, which in 2015 left 818 people dead and another 45,000 injured, according to the National Transportation and Safety Board.
The partners determined that the main reasons people don't wear helmets are because they're uncomfortable and inconvenient.
"They're big, they're bulky, they're not portable and they don't look good," Hall said.
With that in mind, the pair came up with the Park & Diamond helmet, named after the intersection where Hall's sister was hit.
On the surface, the duo's helmet resembles a baseball cap, a conscious design choice meant to appeal to those who don't wear helmets because they think they're ugly or unstylish.
But along with its sleek design, the Park & Diamond helmet also offers portability by folding down to the size of a water bottle, while still delivering the safety of a traditional helmet.
"We've shown not only is it as safe as a conventional helmet, at times it can be even safer," Hall said.
The collapsible cap retails at $89, but its true value is in the protection it offers, he said.
Rachel Hall is still recovering and remains a big source of inspiration, happy that her brother turned tragedy into advocacy.