The grandest hotels and towers in the world may have been designed to withstand earthquake, but they don’t necessarily protect people inside from falling objects. So LifeGuard developed a desk which it described as a highly-engineered structure stronger than the building that would house it. At first glance, a LifeGuard desk looks like a typical wood furniture that can collapse anytime a ceiling falls on it. But Von Bereghy, the company’s chief executive officer, assures customers that LifeGuard desks won’t break until a weight equivalent to 14 Boeing 737 airplanes (1 million pounds) is put on it.
Basic LifeGuard models for corporate usage cost $4,700. Customized units and ballistic-proof defensive gear can cost as much as $10,000. School desks are available at cheaper price – $495 per student.
To prove the durability of the desks, the company put them in an old naval hospital in Oakland, California during its explosive demolition. The desks , as expected, emerged intact.
The 11-man company can produce 200,000 desks and customize furniture to suit executive needs. But for Bereghy, the most important benefit of LifeGuard furniture is the life-saving refuge it can provide during a strong earthquake. With LifeGuard desks, people trapped inside a building can stay alive for two weeks in the event of earthquake and architectural collapse.