Coral Manta Uses AI to Help Save People from Drowning

Every day, about ten people die from unintentional drowning. Of these, two are children aged 14 or younger. Drowning ranks fifth among the leading causes of unintentional death in the United States. Even with lifeguards on duty sometimes accidents still occur. One company is turning to artificial intelligence to help make pools safer.

Meet the Coral Manta 3000 from Israeli company Coral Detection Systems. It uses artificial intelligence to identify a person who may be drowning. If the unit sees a motionless head beneath the surface for more than 15 seconds, a high-pitched alarm will notify lifeguards and attendants. The system also connects to mobile devices, which will alert users remotely if the alarm gets triggered.

Pool AI Analyzes Video in Real-Time

The device, which can be mounted in the corner of the pool, can see about 10 yards by 10 yards. The unit analyzes real-time video that it captures from an underwater camera. The AI was trained on millions of images to learn what a human head looks like and how people act in swimming pools.

The Coral Manta does not need a human to activate or deactivate as it watches swimmers on its own around the clock. The machine will emit a chirp every time a new person enters the pool. It will learn who that person is so it won’t chirp again if they hop out and hop back in. As far as power goes, the unit charges primarily with solar. For indoor pools, it can also run off of a battery back up.

Coral Manta Testing in PA YMCA

The Manta seems pretty affordable as each unit costs about $2,500. The Coral system was developed by Israeli software developer Eyal Golan, CEO of Coral Detection Systems. The system was named after two 10-year-old girls, Coral and Or, who drowned in a Tel Aviv suburb backyard pool.

The Coral system is currently being tested in Pennsylvania at the Easton/Phillipsburg Branch of the Greater Valley YMCA. The facility has a unit in every corner of the pool for full coverage. Testing will last at the branch’s six-lane pool for the next six months. After the pilot, the Greater Valley YMCA will consider expanding the technology to other locations.

Check out our articles on Alibaba using AI to combat the coronavirus and facial recognition in China’s subways.