The recent threads about tape measures reminded me of a serious injury
I received from one not long ago. I was measuring a board about 6
feet long. When done, I pushed the release and the tape retracted
with such force that my index finger became pinched between the
housing and the little tab at the end of the tape.
I decided to take action. First step was to lock up all my tape
measures in a strong safe, far away from the grandchildren and
Next, I wrote letters to all the consumer agencies and my faithful
public servants, the congress people and asked that they pass laws
governing the use of the tape measure.
Then, I got to work on a new invention. I have a working model of a
protection device. When the tape retracts, it has a sensor on the end
that will stop the tape just short of your finger. It comes to a dead
stop and it even ejects the hook on the end to eliminate any
possibility of contact. In order to work, you do have to plug the
tape measure into a 120V outlet, but hey, a minor inconvenience to
stop a pinch. I've thinking of a 220 model for heavy industry use
So far, I've only tested it on hot dogs. I'm looking for volunteers
to put their finger in place, but frankly, no one has had the courage
to do so.
I'm going to market it as Tape Stop. Kind of a catchy name huh? I
just invented the name too. Once perfected, I'm going to demo it to
lawmakers and safety experts. I think it should be mandated to be on
every tape measure sold. Its for the children, you know.