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August 12, 2009

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The New Point Knife: pointlessly pointless

The New Point Knife was developed by industrial designer John Cornock after his wife watched a TV documentary in which three doctors advocated banning traditional knives.

Cornock’s idea for a new ‘anti-stab’ knife was picked up by the Home Office’s very own Design and Technology Alliance, a group which has been set up to examine ways of designing products that deter crime.

Apparently Cornock said: “It can never be a totally safe knife, but the idea is you cannot inflict a fatal wound. Nobody could just grab one out of the kitchen drawer and kill somebody.”

Now I do not wish to malign Mr Cornock and, on reading his resume, it’s apparent that he’s an extremely accomplished and award-winning designer of great merit, with interests in motor racing, cooking and golf. Nowhere in the resume does it state that he has any interest, knowledge or basic understanding of the structure of a knife attack or the medical implications of knife wounds, which becomes all too apparent when you look at his design of the New Point knife.

Impossible to stab someone to death?

Cornock states that the knife will cut vegetables, but that its design will make it almost impossible to stab someone to death. If it can cut a carrot it can cut your throat!

I too am an award-winning designer and those that know me will be aware that I was the creator of the ResQhook which is now referred to globally as ‘The Knife That Saves Lives’. I also have over 40 years’ experience in the design, methods of deployment and concealment of weapons, with a special interest in knives and weapons-related crime.

Knives and scissors with blunt ends have been with us for hundreds of years. They’re extensively used in hospitals, kitchens and schools. Back in the days when Nelson was a lad, it was pretty common for a ship’s captain worried about mutiny to have all riggers turn in their knives to have their points ground off. I don’t believe there are any historical records that show this action ever thwarted a mutiny.

As you would expect, Cornock has designed a very stylish product, but I’m afraid that’s all it is.

Will it cut down on knife crime?

The New Point Knife is similar in shape to the prow of a ship. The knife has a blunt upper overhang, with an undercut that protects the sharp tipped blade, and while it may prevent a mortal stab wound through heavy clothing it would – in my opinion – without doubt penetrate unprotected soft tissue.

As a kitchen tool it’s not a bad idea. You’re unlikely to stab yourself in the hand while carving the Sunday joint and, if you were to accidentally drop the knife, there’s little chance of it impaling your foot to the floor. Other than that, it’s just another knife.

Please don’t insult our intelligence by telling us this so-called ‘new invention’ will cut down on knife crime because it will not make one iota’s worth of difference.

Fear the man threatening you with a spoon

There’s an old saying: ‘Fear the man threatening you with a spoon’. It’s true – if you were to put the New Point Knife in the hands of an eight year-old child with murderous intent or an eighty year-old grandmother who believes you are about to harm her grandchild. Believe me, it’ll not be Cornock’s ergonomically stylish design that will save lives.

Furthermore, statistics tell us that the majority of weapons-related violence in the home is actually committed using blunt instruments. What’s next? Foam rubber hammers?

I think Mr Cornock and the Home Office’s Design and Technology Alliance should have read my book ‘Avoiding and Surviving a Knife Attack’ before putting pen to paper. Maybe, just maybe, the British tax payer could then have saved some money on yet another pointless idea (no pun intended).

Who’s going to buy it?

This new knife is expected to go on sale towards the end of the year. I ask the question: ‘Who’s going to buy it?’ Please take note: if your wife or husband decides to replace all your current kitchen knives with the new anti-stab versions does that say something about how they feel about you, or how they think you feel about them? Maybe it will become a best-selling wedding present. What it will not do is cut down on knife crime.

I received no Government funding for the research and development of the ResQHook which is NATO-codified and documented as having saved lives, so why has the Government spent my money on researching the design of a knife without a point, because that’s all it is?

Steve Collins is CEO at PS5

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Lee Collins
Lee Collins
December 20, 2018 9:58 am

I think your points are ridiculous. this knife is designed to stop accidents from happening like in a care home not fatally causing damage from a stab or in schools or anywhere that may use a knife it’s a fatal stab prevention not a complete stab proof knife goes again the whole point of it being a knife. Of course it would penetrate You could force a butter knife or a spoon and it will impact under enough pressure but this knife will prevent a potential unintended fatal accident from occuring.