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Cyberbooth #280
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Roadside Message Board
Category: Automotive

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Roadside Message Board Kit
The Problem To Be Solved:

When police spot a car by the roadside, it's often difficult to tell whether the car has been abandoned, if the motorist has gone to get the help they need, and whether or not the owner is coming back soon or even during that same day.

Most people are unprepared for their car to break down, and usually don't have paper and pen on hand to leave a note. Many vehicles get ticketed and even towed because of this, especially when they break down in the middle of the road, causing traffic jams or being a hazard to other motorists. When vehicle owners do leave a note, messages are often scribbled on all sorts of bits of scrap paper and napkins which are usually illegible.

While many individuals have cell phones in their cars, there are areas where cell phones don't work due to bad reception, such as rural areas. And even when the cell phone is used, for example, to call someone to pick them up, the car is left by itself for a period of time.

Roadside Message Board: Unique Features & Benefits:

The Roadside Message Board is a low-cost, ready-to-use emergency signage kit that can be quickly and easily set-up on a car window, to provide clear communication between stranded motorists and local police, while the driver goes to find help.

The Roadside Message Board is a rectangular lightweight and plastic board, about the size of a car license plate, that attaches to any window with two suction cups which are reversible, allowing users to place it on the inside of the window [if they're leaving] or on the rear of the car [if they're inside]. The message board features a special slot where users insert one of 10 pre-printed message strips. It also has a whiteboard space and dry erase pen for adding handwritten notes.

The messages strips include the most frequently used phrases, including:

  • car trouble;
  • please do not ticket;
  • be back in ___ minutes;
  • please do not tow;
  • overheated;
  • battery dead;
  • went for help;
  • flat tire;
  • out of gas
  • for sale.

To help alert passing motorists, the message board also features a flashing red safety light with a replaceable long-life battery which lasts approximately 96 hours. When not in use, the Roadside Message Board is easy to store and fits comfortably under most car seats or above the sun visor.

The kit comes complete in a tightly sealed zip lock bag in case people have a leaky car trunk.

The Roadside Message Board is ideal for promtional giveaways, such as from emergency roadside service companies and insurance agencies.

The Roadside Message Board can also be utilized for additional applications, such as in storefronts, to leave messages around the house or at the office. For example:

  • [Home] UPS, please leave package in bushes
  • [Storefront] Went to lunch, be back in 30 minutes
  • Home] Kids, I went to the store, be back in 30 min.

    Target market:

    There are approximately 132,308,044 cars and SUVs in the U.S., and AAA reported that in the year 2000, they serviced 25 million calls from motorists with car breakdowns for problems like dead batteries, flat tires, out of gas.

    The Roadside Message Board can be sold nationwide through car washes, auto parts stores, and car rental agencies. It can also be sold as a fundraiser for schools, which keep up to 60% profit.

    Inventor is seeking:

    The product is currently being manufactured and is available in wholesale quantities.

    The inventor is also seeking additional distribution channels including wholesalers, jobbers, etc., and possibly manufacturer reps to carry the line.

    The Roadside Message Board is currently being assembled by several handicapped companies.

    Also, the product would be available on an exclusive licensing arrangement for a qualifed company only.

    Contact information

    Contact: Fred Fink Title: President, Inventor
    Organization: Fred Fink Inc.
    Address: 31 Sequoia Lane, North Attleboro, MA 02760
    Phone: 508 736-3368-cell
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