The SafariSeat is an all-terrain wheelchair made from bicycle parts

Wheelchairs are a daily necessity for many people around the world. Still, specialized parts can make maintaining one difficult in some countries. Others can’t even afford the wheelchair at all. A new wheelchair design aims to address this issue by using traditional bike parts.

The SafariSeat is a new, off-road, hand-powered redesign of the wheelchair that was created with these developing countries in mind. What makes it so unique is that its parts are made from local materials and bike parts. This ensures that nearly anyone will have the parts to fix it. A mechanism mimicking a car’s suspension keeps each wheel on the ground. This improves stability and makes the new wheelchair much better off-road.

The inspiration for the project came from industrial designer Janna Deeble after she suffered a short-term injury. Now living in the U.K., Deeble grew up in Kenya, where one in 200 disabled people lack any access to mobility. As a child, he knew a Samburu tribesman named Letu who had been disabled by Polio.

“Even in a city designed for wheelchair use with curb cutouts and ramps and lifts, it was infuriating.” Deeble said to GMA News. “I got stuck the whole time, and my wheelchair was just useless, and this led me to think, well, if I’m experiencing these problems here, how bad must it be for Letu?”

According to Deeble, the patent-pending design of the SafariSeat improves the biomechanical efficiency of wheelchairs. Instead of standard human power, two levers provide more power and speed.

The plan is to make everything open source. Anyone will be able to use the designs to build or improve a SafariSeat for their community.

“Open Source means that the designs will be totally free, and we’re doing this because we want SafariSeat to help as many people as possible.” said Deeble. “Our aim is that anyone in the world will be able to take the plans and build SafariSeats for people in their community, both helping people with disabilities and creating jobs for local people.”

To date, the SafariSeat’s Kickstarter campaign has raised more than $115,000, which is triple the original target of just $38,000. All this extra money allows the team to hold more workshops in Kenya. They will also be able to expand into Uganda, Tanzania, and eventually the rest of the world.


Driving a prototype 2020 Passat at Volkswagen’s Arizona Proving Ground

Volkswagen’s Arizona Proving Ground is where new cars are tested to the breaking point, including the 2020 Passat midsize sedan. Ride along as the new Passat completes testing ahead of its 2019 launch.

Hertz speeds up car rentals with biometric scan technology

Biometric security technology that uses face, fingerprint, and voice recognition is gaining traction, with Hertz emerging as the latest company to incorporate it into its daily operations.
Product Review

The 2019 Porsche Macan S is a luxurious and quick SUV, but it's no road tripper

The roster of models challenging the Porsche Macan grows annually. The German firm updated its smallest, most affordable SUV with a new engine, more tech features, and subtle design tweaks to keep it looking fresh.
Product Review

‘Just Cause 4’ is mindless fun that leaves little room for much else

Just Cause 4 revels in explosions and over-the-top action, but its world feels empty and hollow. With few new ideas and a stale open world, it's a fun but shallow piece of escapism.

Built to take a beating and still perform, these are the best hiking watches

A proper hiking watch should track exercise metrics and act as a navigational co-pilot during any kind of hike. Ideally, it'll even have a built-in GPS system and sensors. Here are five of the best hiking watches.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Folding canoes and ultra-fast water filters

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Emerging Tech

Transplanted pig hearts show promise in baboon trials. Are humans next?

Researchers in Germany have successfully transplanted modified pig hearts into baboons. The results take us one step closer to ending organ transplant waiting lists for good. Here's why.

Crush your next workout with the best Fitbit for every activity

Fitbits are amazingly helpful tools for setting fitness goals and tracking progress. However, different activities require different metrics. We've gathered a list of the best Fitbits for running, swimming, biking, and other activities.

These fitness deals come just in time to work off those holiday calories

Finding the motivation to work out is one thing. Finding space at home to get in a few sets and reps can be an entire challenge in itself. Luckily for you, Walmart and Amazon both have space saving fitness machines and tools on sale right…

Google Fit app finally gets a widget, among other new features

Google Fit hasn't received any new features since its redesign. This week, the company is rolling some new tools; users will be able to add a widget to their Android home screen, adjust the intensity of their workouts, and more.

Amazon is slashing its prices on an array of top blenders

Quality blenders from Vitamix to Ninja and more are on sale at Amazon — just in time to gift them for Christmas. They're great for preparing tasty treats, and as a kitchen staple, they make a great gift for the budding chef in your life.

Best Products of 2018

Our reception desk has so many brown boxes stacked up, it looks like a loading dock. We’re on a first-name basis with the UPS guy. We get new dishwashers more frequently than most people get new shoes. What we’re trying to say is: We…

REI clearance sale extends discounts on Garmin, Fitbit, and GoPro devices

Beyond the things you typically expect to find at REI — like tents, skis, and jackets — there are tons of great deals on quality tech foryour outdoor adventures. From smartwatches to action cameras, here are the best tech deals.
Smart Home

Alexa’s latest skill helps patients manage high blood pressure

People who need some help managing their high blood pressure are getting some help via a new Alexa skill developed in partnership with Omron Healthcare that will work directly with the manufacturer's monitors.