Nils Bohlin

Inducted 1999

Inventor of the three-point lap/shoulder belt – considered one of the most important safety innovations of all time. Nils Bohlin saved thousands of lives with his innovations in automobile safety. Born in Sweden, Nils Bohlin received a Bachelor of Science Degree from Harnosand Laroveik of Sweden in 1939, then joined the SAAB Aircraft Company as a Design Engineer. In 1955, he was placed in charge of the development of ejection seats and pilot rescue systems. Bohlin joined AB Volvo as a safety engineer in 1958 and he directed the Automotive Safety and Interior Design Departments beginning in 1959. In 1969, Bohlin was assigned to Volvo’s Central Research and Development Department. He headed research and development related to automotive safety matters until 1984. Bohlin retired as Senior Engineer in 1985. Nils Bohlin’s invention of the lap/shoulder belt in 1958 made safety belt use easier and more convenient and has saved thousands of lives. At the International Patent Conference in Munich in 1985, the West German Patent Office cited Bohlin’s patent for the three-point lap/shoulder belt as one of the eight most important patents it had issued in its first 100 years.

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Class of 1999

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