NUS grad designs vest to keep crowds away on MRT

NUS grad designs vest to keep crowds away on MRT

SINGAPORE - An industrial design graduate from the National University of Singapore has come up with an innovative solution to protect your personal space from being invaded while on the MRT.

Ms Cheng Siew Han said she designed the 'Spike Away' vest during a workshop she attended while she was an undergraduate. 

The workshop, helmed by German furniture designer Werner Aisslinger, asked attendees to create a "Chindogu" solution to a particular problem. The term "Chindogu" is of Japanese origin - which literally means, 'weird tools'. 

In her online profile on design site Behance.net which introduced the vest, Ms Cheng wrote: "Trains are usually crowded during peak hours. Everybody will push each other to try and get onto the train. How can I protect my personal space? The idea was then conceived. 'What if I wear a vest that is full of spikes?'"

Ms Cheng describes the vest as made of "strips of spiky, flexible plastic material found in the gardening section of a handy store". They are then held together with cable ties. "Fittingly, it was normally used to keep birds and cats away from plants," said Ms Cheng.

In an interview with online business magazine "Fast Company", Ms Cheng says she has yet to try out the vest in reality. She graduated from NUS in 2011 and is now working in a local design consultancy.

According to UK's Daily Mail, Ms Cheng is considering mass-developing the vests for sale, but netizens on the site commented that they would pose a danger to commuters, especially children.

candicec@sph.com.sg

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