Limerick men’s invention could help US gun control

Daniel Tighe

Reporter:

Daniel Tighe

A Limerick entrepreneur has held talks at the White House in Washington DC over technology that could potentially lessen gun crime in the United States.

A Limerick entrepreneur has held talks at the White House in Washington DC over technology that could potentially lessen gun crime in the United States.

Robert McNamara, originally from Rathkeale but now based in the United Arab Emirates, met with several senior White House officials including the United States attorney general, Erik Holder.

The recent tragic shootings at Sandy Hook elementary school in Connecticut has led to the creation of a gun control commission chaired by US vice-president Joe Biden.

The commission is believed to be interested in the technology created by Mr McNamara’s TriggerSmart Ltd.

The company, based in Limerick, uses radio frequency identification (RFID) to ensure a weapon can only be fired by its authorised user.

It has patented the technology in the US with patent pending in 57 other countries, including Ireland.

“The authorised user will wear an RFID tag that disables the blocking mechanism on the gun and then the authorised user can fire the weapon.

“[The tag] can be worn in the form of a ring or a bracelet,” Mr McNamara told Fox News.

He added that he is hoping a pilot scheme utilising his company’s technology could be rolled out by law enforcement in the US.

The co-founder of TriggerSmart Ltd is fellow Limerickman, Pat O’Shaughnessy from Newcastle West.

Mr O’Shaughnessy and Mr McNamara had originally investigated the viability of the biometric technology seen in recent James Bond blockbuster Skyfall.

Asked how long before the technology comes to market Mr McNamara replied: “It’s more how much than how long,” highlighting the high cost of rolling out new technologies in the sector.