New Boater Safety Solutions Sought in U.S. Coast Guard Ready for the Rescue Challenge

The U.S. Coast Guard Ready for Rescue Challenge has been launched. The challenge is a $255,000 prize competition that seeks boater safety solutions to make it easier to find people in the water. The competition is offered through a collaboration between the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) and the U.S. Coast Guard Research and Development Center (RDC).

“Boater safety solutions that harness new designs and technologies can improve the chance of a successful rescue,” said William N. Bryan, DHS senior official performing the duties as under secretary for science and technology. “New, innovative solutions are critical. We are proud to support our nation’s maritime first responder with this important, life-saving effort.”

This call for concepts is the first phase of an anticipated three-phase prize competition. Phase I concepts could include a new or updated life jacket or PFD, an attachment to a life jacket or PFD, or an additional device for boaters. The best concepts will be effective, affordable and hold the potential for wide adoption by recreational boaters.

Concepts should be submitted by October 15. There will be up to five monetary prize winners and up to five non-monetary honorable mention award winners. A total of $25,000 will be distributed evenly.

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In Phase II, selected participants from Phase I will participate in a “Piranha Pool” to pitch their solution and compete for a total prize pool of $120,000. This prize will assist each monetary prize winner in developing their concept into a working prototype. In Phase III, the Coast Guard will field test prototypes alongside standard Coast Guard approved safety equipment. At the conclusion of Phase III, the judging panel may award a total $110,000 in additional monetary prizes.

For more information about the Coast Guard Ready for Rescue Challenge, visit