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Ifor Caine (Taffy) Davies

Location: Oakville, ON

Award: Innovation Award

Category: Mechanics

Year: 2013

Innovation:

Zafety Lug Lock® is a design-engineered plastic unit that is installed round the torqued nuts of large trucks and buses securing the nuts to prevent them from loosening and falling off, creating the possibility of vehicle damage, wheel-off situations and catastrophic outcomes (multi-vehicle accidents and loss of life).

Winner Spotlight Video Transcript

Taffy Davies: "Good day! My name is Taffy Davies, I'm from Oakville, Ontario. I'm the proud inventor of the product Zafety Lug Lock."

Manning Committee Members: "What do you think this could be?" "Maybe it's something for camping." "Maybe something you could open a wine bottle with?" "Bottle opener, um…" "It looks like a set of glasses, perhaps?" "Goggles.. maybe something for crafts?"

Dr. Kruchten: "I would have been totally clueless."

Dr Fournier: "The Zafety Lug Lock is a small plastic device which fits over the lugs on a tire. What that does is, it prevents those lugs from opening up due to the vibration of the vehicle."

Dr. Kruchten: "Well basically the nut is immobilized, and it's immobilized relative to the next nut."

Taffy Davies: "The idea initially came when I watched two employees of a transportation company remove a wheel off a large truck and replace it. And it was evident to me that they didn't have the correct tools to do the removal or the installation. I spent some time doing sketches of how to hold nuts in place. A TV show came on TV, it was a detective show, and the guy brought out the handcuffs. That's where the initial idea came from."

Lori Maguire: "We wanted to keep it very simple and he kept at it until it was a very simple product."

Taffy Davies: "There was a great deal of skepticism. The fact that piece of plastic could stop two nuts from undoing. It's a safety product, it's not a pair of shoe laces. We are making a safety product and we have to stand behind it."

Lori Maguire: "Taffy is a very curious person. He likes to solve problems and he likes to accomplish things. but I think the most important thing is, he is persistent if nothing else."

Dr Ronsky: "It's often much easier to come up with a complicated solution than it is to come up with a simple solution. The uniqueness and the originality to make it simple is what stood out to us."

Dr. Kruchten: "It fit pretty well in that category of good innovation coming from Canadian people not supported by massive research or a large corporation."

Dr Fournier: "This is a small, apparently simple device which has been widely embraced by the commercial industry. More than on a million units have this have been sold around the world."

Lori Maguire: "We had one mechanic tell us that he thought it saved the life of the driver coming back from Calgary. He'd been through the mountain and the wheels were very loose and he felt the Zafety Lug Lock kept the wheel on and saved the driver's life."