Volvo proudly exclaim that: “few people have saved as many lives as Nils Bohlin”. 2019 is the 60th anniversary of Bohlin’s breakthrough idea used by billions of people: The 3-point safety belt has saved hundreds-of-thousands of lives and prevented or reduced the severity of injuries for millions of people.
Nils Bohlin is the little-known Volvo engineer who invented the V-type three-point safety belt in 1959, and saw his innovation through to universal adoption across the motor industry.
This reminds us that invention and innovation are not the same thing; the latter requires adoption to qualify, making innovation invariably risky.
It is hard now to imagine cars without safety belts.