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VR / Healthcare / Education

American Red Cross Lifeguard VR Training

Unique Immersive Scanning Simulation in Virtual Environment to Save Lives

In the USA, more children ages 1–4 die from drowning than any other cause of death. For children ages 5–14, drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional injury death after motor vehicle crashes (according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). To address this immense challenge, the American Red Cross focuses its efforts on providing knowledge and skills to help prevent, recognize and respond to aquatic emergencies. However, many critical components of lifeguard training are not replicable in a traditional training environment.

Therefore, collaborating with Lucid Reality Labs, the American Red Cross developed one of the organization’s most impactful use cases to teach lifeguards to save lives using Virtual Reality (VR). Lifeguard VR was created, modernizing lifeguard training and providing a more engaging and effective learning experience. Lifeguard VR has a collection of real-world pool environments, allowing lifeguards to practice and polish victim recognition skills taught in Red Cross Lifeguard training. The solution is created for Oculus Quest 2 devices. It will be released on the market soon, in 2023.

Real-World Environment & Avatars

The presented first-of-a-kind solution is an interactive and immersive training virtual environment. Created using 3D animations, it ensures the highest level of visual fidelity. The digitally recreated collection of real-world water environments with indoor and outdoor options reflects the real-life experience with lights, shadows, and sounds. The hyper-realistic avatars were developed using the motion capture system with perfect mapping of the human body, its movements and interaction with the environment.

The Experience

The training scenarios were developed in collaboration with the Red Cross aquatic experts to create a science-based yet hands-on solution to fill a gap within the lifeguarding industry. Lifeguarding involves cognitive skills such as surveillance and visual scanning to search for and identify a drowning person. 

A lifeguard’s quick recognition and response can mean the difference between life and death. Lifeguards should be able to recognize and respond to a distressed swimmer or drowning person within 30 seconds. Lifeguards can practice and polish their surveillance skills in a variety of immersive VR environments and scenarios. Lifeguard VR reinforces skills taught in the traditional learning environment, with the goal of improving surveillance and recognition skills in an engaging and accessible way. 

VR Experience Flow & Training Methodology

Unique Immersive Scanning Simulation in Virtual Environment to Save Lives

The Feedback & Analytics

By collecting and organizing the user’s data in the admin panel, the created solution allows to analyze progress, obtain expert feedback, and score all the training participants. Performance scores are captured to encourage competition, providing an engaging training experience tailored to the young lifeguard demographic. In addition, data shared with instructors and training administrators outlines the further steps for improvement and helps aquatic managers make data-driven decisions to ensure the training excellence at its best.

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