The Better Body Bag

Setting new standards in identifying victims of natural disasters and armed conflict

Identifying victims after natural disasters is a challenge. Failing to do so drives cost up and brings distress, trauma and frustration. If we fail, a person is lost forever. Together with forensic experts from the International Committee of the Red Cross we have developed a better solution. It improves the chances of giving victims of natural disasters their identity back.

Improved victim identification

Our primary goal is to protect the identity of the victim and ensure closure for the families. This is done by delaying decomposition and improving visual identification.

  • Vacuum-able via airtight and watertight seal
  • Temperature regulation
  • Fluid management

Improved conditions for fieldworkers

Additionally, the bag improves the working conditions of humanitarian actors and helpers that manage the dead after catastrophes or armed conflicts.

  • Containment of odours and liquids
  • 30% lighter than current standard bodybags
  • Puncture and tear resistant

In terms of body bags, recovery and retrieval of dead bodies not much has advanced in decades. It is actually probably the first time humans have thought of applying new technologies to this issue in a major way. I would like to congratulate you because you will make a big difference to a lot of people

A brief timeline of our project

  • December 2017Awarded a CHF 200.000 grant from HIF (UK) to scale to production

    We are currently improving our current model and scaling up production. The goal is to ultimately produce 10.000 bags which will be directly tested in the field by our partners.
  • August 2017

    Poster presentation at IAFS Toronto
  • February 2017Produced 130 prototype bags

    Our first major milestone was the production of 130 bags for scientific testing by ICRC forensics and independent partners.
  • October 2016

    Won an award at the GoodFestival
  • June 2016

    Awarded "Top 25 Swiss Startup Ideas" by >>venture>>
  • May 2016

    Participant at ICRC Global Forensic Advisory Board
  • 2016 Presentations

  • November 2015

    Presented at ICRC's Managing the Dead event
  • October 2015Signed ICRC R&D Agreement

    Following SSRA's proposal for a Better Body Bag the Innovation Initiative from the International Committee of the Red Cross decided to support a longer R&D project
  • June 2015

    Initial concept presented at United Nations ECOSOC with THE Port
  • May 2015

    Participant at ICRC Global Forensic Advisory Board
  • November 2014THE Port Hackathon

    The project began as a technical challenge proposed during the first THE Port Hackathon at CERN.

This project has been made possible with the support of