Fall detection device


I don’t know if there is fall detection device. I had a really scary situation today and would like to find a solution.

My wife blacked out and fell in the bathroom hurting her self to the point where she could not attend to my 11 months old. Lucky I did not leave for work yet.

If I wasn’t home it would have been 4 hours later when I would have called to check on her and my son.

Would any of these fitness tracker work? with or without Smartthings?

I notice there are SmartApps for elder but that is using motion sensor. Have a small son that will not work too well because he is running around.

Any help would be great.

I don’t know of any that work with SmartThings, nor do I know of one that works with a fitness tracker.

I myself use a wheelchair and have a medical monitoring system that does use a fall tracker. There are several available that you can get. But you will have to pay a monthly fee of $30 to $50 depending on the services provided.

In 2014 Consumer Reports did a review of the top systems at that time which is still helpful.


In addition, since the consumer reports article was written, great call has added fall detection to their splash unit. This is the one I’m now using. I like it because it will work both at home and while I’m out. (Prior to that I used Philips lifeline for several years, which was the first one that had fall detection. I liked it a lot also, but it only worked at home and cost more than the great call.)


While not inexpensive, for about $1.50 day, If you need this kind of monitoring it can be well worth it.

You can sometimes find a group discount on these. Try the medic alert foundation (the one that does the ID bracelets) and Costco. Costco seems to feature one system at a time for about three months and then switch to another one.

One solution that comes to mind for me:
Amazon Echo with IFTTT (setup a recipe like “Alexa, trigger help” to have a text sent to your phone)

To stay in SmartThings, you could get a Jawbone UP and use the Jawbone Panic Button SmartApp (it’s under Safety and Security).

The Echo is good, but only if the person is conscious and audible after the fall. And of course within range of the Echo.

The fall detector systems will automatically contact the medical monitoring center with an alert if the person falls, even if they are unconscious.

So different use cases.

This is one of those things we run into with a lot of medical management systems.

Is this a life and death need you really need to meet? Or is this a case of “what cool features can I make this gadget do?”

There are a lot of ways you can use SmartThings to send a text. And that will be all that some people need. But if you have a specific need for fall detection monitoring, you’ll probably go to a different system, just to cover all the bases.


Agreed on the different use cases.
It wasn’t specified if she stayed unconscious or if she woke back up right away after the fall/injury. That would certainly play a large part in determining the path forward (and going the subscription route is the safest way as it covers the most situations)

1 Like

This sounds like a great idea but she has to regain consciousness to hit the panic button. The problem with someone blacking out is that it takes a few mins to understand what happens.

It would be so easy to fit a accelerometer to fitness tracker.

That’s true. If she carried a cell phone around all the time at home, you could set up something to check that Accelerometer.

Another thing you may look into is a smartwatch. A lot of them have Accelerometers. I’m not sure how much of that potential has been tapped as far as being able to get those readings, but it may be worth exploring as an option.

@JDRoberts I’ve seen many commercials for medical alert but unfortunately they are not the most fashionable. It may also be a waste of money for me cause it will only use it for a few weeks. It has to be multipurpose.

@diehllane life situation can be very old sometimes. I heard her hitting the floor and was looking for my phone to call emergency but NO where to be found. I will explore smart watch option.

Most fall detection sensors are using accelerometers, but they are not using wrist-worn accelerometers because you would typically get a lot of false positive indicators. People’s arms move around a lot.

Instead, the fall detection sensors are typically worn in a special lanyard around the neck, or in a special holder at the waist.

1 Like

That’s correct however pair with other sensor like heart rate monitor the false alarm could be reduce.

That’s true. Just picking up the baby would be enough movement to trigger that I’m sure. Same with grabbing a bag of groceries out of the trunk.

And from my research it doesn’t look like any smartwatch apps are there for this yet in the Google Play store. There are regular ones for the phone, but that then requires someone to always have the phone on them which isn’t always convenient at home. We all wear sweatpants or leggings (for the women) at home and they don’t always have pockets.

There’s also the issue of reduction of battery life when you’re running constant monitoring of the accelerometer, which can be significant on a smart watch.

I do have an Apple Watch, and really like it. I use it for voice text now. :sunglasses: It’s very good for emergencies. But not for falls.

And anyone who is at risk for falls is usually at greatest risk in the shower/bathtub. The purpose-built fall detection sensors will work in that environment. Most smart watches/phones will not.

As far as the “will she wear it?” Issue, that’s always a factor in medical monitoring. If she’ll view it as a safety device for the child’s benefit, she may be more willing to wear it.

The great call splash when worn as a pendant is generally perceived by other people as a very cool miniature phone. You do have a choice of silver or blue and it’s very high-tech looking. Most of the others are kind of plastic and medical looking.

When I wore the Philips lifeline, people always assumed it was a heart monitor or something. But with the splash they do ask about it and when they see the communication button (which is a two way audio) I usually get a very positive response.

There has to be some solution that could think of…
Samsung get us together with your pool of engineers and we will solution. I’m sure accelerometer can be more efficient . Maybe not a smart watch but a necklace with a pendant and Bluetooth to communicate with your phone. Most people will not go more than 15 mins without looking at their phones, to eliminate false alarm the phone will have a notification to action.