Australian shipbuilder Matt Duncan was so affected by the Japanese earthquake and tsunami that he put his engineering skills to use and designed a Tsunami Survival Pod capable of withstanding six tons of debris. Duncan, who is also the owner of the Gold Coast houseboat company Havana Houseboats, used his shipbuilding skills to design the four person survival vessel.

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Speaking, Mr. Duncan said: “I was home the day the tsunami hit, watching it on television and just thinking ‘what could I have done to save these people?” Enter the Tsunami Survival Pod. The pod is made of spiral-welded steel, but like a car, it hasstrategically designed crumple zonesto absorb impacts and protect the passengers. The occupants can strap themselves into molded racing seats, each of which has a five-point safety harnesses to prevent them from being violently thrown around in the case of a tsunami. The windows are even made from bulletproof glass in order to let light into the pod.

If a tsunami was to strike, a family of four could immediately get into the pod and seal themselves inside. Once the doors are shut, the survival pod has enough air inside for approximately two and a half hours, and it has inward-opening access panels to let fresh air in if needed. It even has exterior flashing beacon lights to attract the attention of rescuers and lifting hooks for a helicopter rescue.

Duncan added that the pod could be fitted with emergency supplies to serve as a survival shelter in the days following a tsunami. “One of the best things about it is it can be stored in the back of the average garage and wheeled out by one person,” he said.”I would be happy if I just sold one and it saved four people.”

Of course, it comes with a hefty price tag – $8500 – but if you live in a part of the world where tsunamis are likely then the life-saving potential is priceless.

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Images: Brendan Radke/Havana House Boats