Thanks to human-accelerated climate change, scientists say we can expect extreme weather to become more common over the next 20 years. This means more tsunamis, earthquakes and tornadoes, and countless lives that will be disrupted. Families displaced by disaster are traumatized, and need time alone to achieve some level of peace.
Often, temporary shelters are stadiums or comfortless trailers. A recent entry in the 2012 James Dyson Award competition could offer a more private environment for disaster victims. The ePod temporary shelter concept provides comfortable beds and private sanctuary for its unfortunate inhabitants. Made from recycled polyethylene, and structure rotationally molded, the design of the pod is simple and cost effective to manufacture, according to the designer.
Besides being easy to make, the ePod features rooftop solar panels that can supply basic electricity for lights, appliances and personal items. This one feature could make a huge difference in disaster zones where power has not yet been restored, or where outlets are limited (ever looked for a place to charge your phone in a high school gym?). Also multiple pods can be connected, providing extra living space and stability.
“Seeing people having to seek shelter in halls and seeing others homeless began the inspiration for this design. The solution needed to be quick to manufacture and relatively inexpensive. The sharing of living space when everyday amenities such as clean running water are scarce means the spread of disease is more likely. The ePod helps reduce this risk,” writes the designer. “To help provide some level of comfort to families that have been hit with these events would be the main driving force behind the inspiration for this design.”