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Publication numberUS3587896 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 28, 1971
Filing dateJun 25, 1970
Priority dateJun 25, 1970
Publication numberUS 3587896 A, US 3587896A, US-A-3587896, US3587896 A, US3587896A
InventorsGraff George Michael
Original AssigneeGraff George Michael
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Safety closure having locking ring
US 3587896 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [72] Inventor George Michael Grafl' 13289 Earl Drive, Garden Grove, Calif. 92641 [2 1] Appl. No. 49,591 [22] Filed June 25, 1970 [45] Patented June 28, 1971 [54] SAFETY CLOSURE HAVING LOCKING RING 9 Claims, 12 Drawing Figs.

[51] Int. Cl A6lj 1/00, 865d 55/02 [50] Field olSearch 2l5/9,98

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,514,003 5/1970 Fitzgerald 2l5/9 3,407,954 l0/l968 Millis ABSTRACT: A combination closure apparatus including a container formed in its upper extremity with a circular opening having a first lug disposed adjacent thereto. A locking ring surrounds the opening and is rotatably secured to the container and is formed with a second lug. A cover is provided for covering the opening and includes a downwardly projecting neck formed with a pair of spaced apart peripheral locking flanges formed with aligned notches for passage of the lugs. lndicia is included on the container, ring and cover for indicat ing when the lugs are aligned with one another and the notches are in alignment with the lugs whereby the ring may be rotated with respect to the container to align the lugs and the cover may then be rotated with respect to both the ring and container to align the notches with the lugs to enable such cover to be removed.

PATENTED M28197! 3; 587 896 SHEET 1 OF 2 INVENTOR.

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SAFETY CLOSURE HAVING LOCKING RING BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention The present invention relates to safety vials for storage of dangerous drugs and the like.

2. Description of the Prior Art Numerous safety vials have been proposed which include relatively complex caps having rotatable rings therein which are formed with notches that must be appropriately indexed with respect to lugs carried on the container in order to remove the cap from the container. Many of the containers of this type are objectionable because they are expensive to manufacture and require a high degree of alertness and dexterity to operate. Other combination containers have been proposed that include a first continuous flange disposed around the neck thereof and a second flange which is formed with peripheral notches. A cap assembly is provided which includes a cap liner that has a cap shell rotatably assembled therewith. The cap liner includes resilient flanges which hook below the continuous flange and are normally held in engagement therewith by the cap shell, such shell including lugs engaged below the notched flange. The cap shell is rotatable to a release position for releasing the fingers and when the liner is properly indexed with respect to the container, the lugs will pass upwardly through the notches in the notched flange to release the cap assembly for removal. A combination closure of this type is shown in US. Pat. No. 3,033,406. However, combination closures of this type suffer the shortcoming that they are relatively expensive to manufacture and an unauthorized person attempting to gain access thereto can determine the rotational position required for release of the cap shell and liner by feel as the shell and liner are rotated to the release positions.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The combination closure apparatus of present invention is characterized by a container which is open on its top end and has a coaxial ring rotatably connected therewith. The container and ring include respective first and second lugs and a cover is provided which includes a neck that telescopes inside such ring and container and is formed with a pair of spaced apart continuous peripheral flanges that are formed with vertically aligned notches for passage of the lugs. lndicia is provided on the cover, ring and container for indicating when the ring lug is aligned with the container lug and when the notches in the cover are aligned with such lugs for convenient removal of the cover.

An object of the present invention is to provide a combination closure apparatus of the type described which is relatively convenient to operate so it can be operated by sick and feeble patients.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a combination closure apparatus of the type described which makes it highly difficult for unauthorized persons to gain access thereto.

A further object of the present invention is to provide a combination closure apparatus of the type described which can easily be assembled by a druggist or the like from a supply of components to provide a desired combination therefor.

A still further object of the present invention is to provide a combination closure apparatus of the type described which is pneumatically sealed.

These and other objects and the advantages of the present invention will become apparent from a consideration of the following detailed description when taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a combination closure apparatus embodying the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a second embodiment of the combination closure apparatus of present invention;

FIG. 3 is an exploded perspective view, in enlarged scale and partially in section, of the combination closure apparatus shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is a horizontal sectional view taken along the line 44 of FIG. 2;

FIG. 5 is a vertical sectional view, in enlarged scale, showing the closure apparatus shown in FIG. 1 and is assembled in closed condition;

FIG. 6 is a vertical sectional view similar to FIG. 5 but showing the closure apparatus in position for being opened;

FIG. 7 is an exploded perspective view, in enlarged scale and partially in section, of the combination closure apparatus shown in FIG. 2;

FIG. 8 is an exploded perspective view, partially in perspective, of a third embodiment of the combination closure apparatus of present invention;

FIG. 9 is an exploded perspective view, partially in section, of a fourth embodiment of the closure apparatus of present invention;

FIG. 10 is an exploded perspective view, partially in section, of a fifth embodiment of the combination closure apparatus of present invention;

FIG. 11 is a vertical sectional view of the closure apparatus shown in FIG. 10; and

FIG. 12 is a vertical sectional view taken along the line 12-12 ofFlG. 11.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT The combination closure apparatus of present invention includes, generally, an upwardly opening container 31 having a locking ring 33 rotatably connected therewith. The container 31 and ring 33 include first and second sets oflugs 41 and 51. A cover, generally designated 55, is provided with a downwardly projecting neck which includes a pair of vertically spaced apart flanges, generally designated 57 and 59, thereon which are each formed with three respective vertically aligned notches 61 and 63. Consequently, the ring 33 may be rotated to align the lugs 51 with the respective lugs 41 of the container 31 and the cover 55 attached with such lugs passing through the respective notches 61 and 63. The cover 55 and ring 33 may then be rotated relative to the container 31 to dispose the lugs 41 and 51 out of alignment with the notches 61 and 63 in engagement below the respective flanges 57 and 59. When the container 31 is to be opened, the ring 33 may be rotated to realign the lugs 51 with the lugs 41 and the cover rotated to align the notches 61 and 63 with such lugs to release such cover for convenient removal.

Referring to FIGS. 1 and 3, the container 31 is generally cylindrically shaped and is formed on its interior with the three equally spaced downwardly raked pointed lugs 41 which are all of different width. The cover 55 is formed with a downwardly projecting neck which has the flanges 57 and 59 formed on the periphery thereof.

Referring to FIGS. 3 and 5, the flanges 57 and 59 are formed with respective upwardly and outwardly angled shoulders 65 and 67 which define grooves 68 and 69 that are shaped to complement the shape of the respective lugs 41 and 51.

The upper end of the sidewall of the container 31 is formed with a peripheral continuous coupling groove 71 which projects downwardly in such sidewall and is formed on its lower extremity with an enlarged-in-cross section arrowhead-shaped chamber 73 which defines a pair of oppositely disposed downwardly facing shoulders 75 and 77. The locking ring 33 includes a circularly shaped downwardly projecting resilient coupling tab 81 which is formed on its lower extremity with an enlarged-in-cross section head 83 which is angularly shaped in cross section to complement the shape of the chamber 73 and engage behind the shoulders 75 and 77. The coupling tab 81 fits snugly in the coupling groove 71 but forms a sufficiently loose fit to provide for relatively free rotation of the lockingring 33.

The container 31 includes an upwardly pointing indexing arrow 91 and both the ring 33 and cover 55 have respective in- I dexing indicia 93 and 95 on the peripheries thereof. Naturally,

this indicia may be of any desired type and may be in the form of raised or depressed forms to be perceived by feel for operation by a blind patient.

In operation, a pharmacist may stock a quantity of the containers 31, rings 33 and covers 55 for assembly at the time a prescription is filled to provide a closure apparatus which may be made of somewhat resilient plastic and the lock ring may be installed on the container by merely pressing the coupling tab 81 downwardly in the receiving groove 71 to compress the locking head 83 for passage downwardly through the groove 71 and subsequent expansion within the locking chamber 73 to engage behind the shoulders 75 and 77 to positively prevent removal thereof.

In the particular apparatus shown in FIG. 1, the combination selected is 53 whereby the numeral 5 on the cover 55 and numeral 3 on the lock ring 33 must be aligned with the indexing arrowhead 91 on the container 31. Consequently, the prescription is placed in the container 31 and the lock ring 33 rotated to align the numeral 3 thereon with the indexing arrow 91 to thereby align the lugs 51 over the lugs 41 with the lugs of corresponding width in direct vertical alignment with one another. The cover 55 may then be installed by aligning the numeral 5 of such cover over the indexing arrow 91 and inserting the neck of such cover downwardly through the ring 33 to enable the respective lugs 41 and 51 to pass through the notches 61 and 63 of corresponding widths. Thereafter, both the cover 55 and ring 33 may be rotated to move the notches 61 and 63 out of alignment with the lugs 41 and the lugs 51 out of alignment with both the container lugs 41 and such notches. Consequently, the prescription will be locked securely within the container 31 and any attempt to forcibly pull the cover 55 from the container 31 will merely wedge the lugs 41 and 51 more securely into the respective grooves 68 and 69 to retain such cover in position.

The patient will be given the combination of 53 and such combination may be typed or otherwise inscribed on the back of the label attached to such container whereby the patient will have access thereto in case he forgets the combination. It will be noted that efforts to gain unauthorized access to the prescription within the container 31 will be relatively futile since the ring 33 may be rotated to numerous different rotational positions with respect to the container 31, and the cover 55 may also be rotated to even more positions relative to the ring 33 and the container 31 thereby providing a multiplying improbability of the correct combination being selected. Further, since the lugs 41 and 51 engage behind both the flanges 57 and 59, a party rotating the ring 33 and cover 55 in attempt to feel alignment of the lugs 41 and 51 with the notches 61 and 63 will be unsuccessful since, even if he is successful in aligning the notches in either flange 57 or ,59 with either set of lugs 41 or 51, the other set of lugs retain the cover 55 securely in position thereby preventing such person from sensing that the notches 61 or 63 are appropriately aligned with the corresponding set of lugs 41 and 51. Further, the fact that each lug in the respective sets of lugs 41 and 51 are ofdifferent widths and that the notches 61 and 63 are correspondingly of different widths, dictate that the lock ring 33 and cover 55 must be clocked to the correct relative rotational position with respect to the container 31 to enable the ap propriate lug 41 and 51 to pass through the notch 61 or 63 of corresponding width.

When the prescription is to be used, the patient merely rotates the ring 33 to align the numeral 3 over the arrow 91 and holds such ring stationary while he rotates the cover 55 to also align the numeral 5 with the arrow 91 thereby positioning the lugs 41 and 51 of equal widths in vertical alignment and aligning the notches of corresponding widths 61 and 63 therewith as shown in FIG. 6 to release such cover for being removed.

The combination closure apparatus shown in FIGS. 2, 4 and 7 is similar to that shown in FIG. 1 except that the container 101 is provided with a peripheral interior flange, generally designated 103, surrounding its opening and formed with a plurality of vertical notches 105. The lock ring, generally designated 107, is also formed with a peripheral interior flange 109 having a set of through vertical notches 111 therein for selective alignment with the notches 105. The cover, generally designated 113, is formed with a downwardly projecting neck having two sets of vertically spaced apart and vertically aligned exterior lugs 115 and 117 for selective receipt in the notches 111 and 105. Consequently, the container shown in FIGS. 2, 4 and 7 is operated the same as the container shown in FIG. 1 except that the lock ring 107 is rotated to align the notches 111 with the notches of corresponding width and the cover 113 is rotated to align the lugs 115 and 117 with the notches 105 and 111 of corresponding width to thereby free such cover for removal.

The combination closure apparatus shown in FIG. 8 is also similar to that shown in FIG. 1 except that the container, generally designated 121, is formed with two sets of exterior lugs 123 and 125. The lock ring, generally designated 127, is formed with an interior inwardly projecting flange 129 having a set of notches 131 formed therein for passage of the respective lugs 123 and 125. The cover, generally designated 131, is rotatably secured to the locking ring 129 and is also formed with an inwardly turned peripheral flange 133 having a set of notches 135 formed therein for passage of the respective lugs 125.

Still referring to FIG. 8, the locking ring 127 is formed with an upwardly opening circular coupling groove 139 which is formed in its lower extremity with an arrowhead-shaped enlarged chamber 141. The cover 131 is formed with a downwardly projecting coupling tab, generally designated 143, which is formed on its lower extremity with an enlarged arrowhead-shaped head for receipt in the chamber 141. Consequently, operation of the closure apparatus shown in FIG. 8 is substantially the same as that for the closure apparatus shown in FIG. 1 except the cover 131 and ring 127 are coupled together for relative rotation and require that the respective notches 131 and 135 of corresponding widths be aligned over one another for passage of the lugs 123 and 125 to enable the cover 131 to be removed from the container 121.

The, closure apparatus shown in FIG. 9 is a modification of the closure apparatus shown in FIG. 8 and includes a container, generally designated 151, which is formed with backto-back inner and outer peripheral flanges 153 and 155 which have respective notches 157 and 159 formed therein for receipt of respective lugs 161 and 163 depending from the respective cover, generally designated 167, and the lock ring, generally designated 169. Consequently, the cover 167 and lock ring 169 are coupled together for relative rotation whereby the lugs 161 and 163 may be aligned with the respective notches 157 and 159 to enable the combination lock ring and cover assembly to be removed from the container 151.

The combination closure apparatus shown in FIGS. 10, 11 and 12 includes a container, generally designated 173, formed with a set of inwardly projecting lugs having a radially inwardly projecting and upwardly angled resilient seal skirt 177 disposed therebelow. A locking ring, generally designated 179, is rotatably mounted on the container 173 and includes a set of inwardly projecting lugs 181. A cover, generally designated 185, is provided and includes a downwardly pro jecting neck having a pair of vertically spaced peripheral exterior locking flanges 187 and 188 formed thereon. The lower extremity of the neck terminates in a downwardly projecting and radially outwardly angled resilient seal skirt 189 for engagement with the sealing flange 177 as shown in FIG. 11. The locking flanges 187 and 188 are each formed with a set of upwardly opening respective sockets 191 and 193 disposed equidistant thereabout for selective registration with downwardly projecting balls 195 and 197 depending beneath the respective lugs 175 and 181. Consequently, the cover 185 may be placed on the container 173 and both it and the locking ring 179 rotated as a unit to register the sockets 191 and 193 with the respective balls 195 and 197 to press the cover 131 downwardly to the position shown in FIG. 11 to positively engage the sealing skirts 189 and 177 with one another to provide an airtight seal.

From the foregoing detailed description, it will be apparent that the combination closure apparatus of present invention provides a convenient and foolproof means for maintaining prescriptions and other dangerous drugs under lock whilc locked in a closure which is relatively convenient to open by a person having the combination therefor. Further, the combination closure apparatus is relatively straightforward in design and economical to manufacture thereby making it feasible for such apparatuses to be sold after the drugs furnished therein have been used.

Various modifications and changes may be made with regard to the foregoing detailed description without departing from the spirit of the invention.

lclaim:

1. Combination closure apparatus comprising:

a container formed on its top end with an opening;

a first lug disposed adjacent said opening;

a rotatable locking ring surrounding said opening and formed with a second lug;

- coupling means coupling said ring to said container for rotation with respect thereto;

a cover for covering said opening and formed with a pair of spaced apart peripheral flanges formed with aligned notches for free passage therethrough of said lugs; and

perceptible indexing means on said container ring and cover for indicating when said lugs are in alignment with one another and said notches are in alignment therewith whereby said ring may be rotated relative to said container to dispose said second lug in alignment with said first lug, said cover placed in position with said lugs passing through said notches, said cover and ring rotated relative to said container to move said lugs into random disposition out of alignment with said notches and engaged under said flanges to thereby lock said cap to said container and when said cover is to be removed it can be rotated to align said notches with said second lug and said ring rotated to align said first lug with said notches to enable said cover to be freely removed from said container.

2. Combination closure apparatus as set forth in claim 1 wherein:

the upper extremity of said container is formed with a continuous downwardly facing peripheral shoulder; and

said coupling means includes a resilient coupling tab carried from said ring and formed with a head for receipt below said shoulder whereby said ring may be pressed onto said container to flex said tab and engage said head below said shoulder to secure said ring rotatably to said container.

3. Combination closure apparatus as set forth in claim 1 wherein:

one of said flanges is formed with a plurality of notches, one

of said notches being narrower than the remaining notches in said one flange; and

said ring is formed with a plurality of different width lugs, all but one of said lugs being wider than said one notch whereby said ring must be positioned with the one lug aligned with said one notch for said cover to be removed.

4. Combination closure apparatus as set forth in claim 1 wherein:

said container includes a peripheral sealing skirt disposed adjacent said opening; and

said cover includes a resilient skirt disposed for engagement with said first mentioned skirt when said cover is on said container.

5. Combination closure apparatus as set forth in claim 1 wherein:

said shoulder is formed interiorally in said container; and

said coupling tab is disposed interiorally in said container to prevent access thereto.

6. Combination closure apparatus as set forth in claim 2 wherein:

the wall of said container is formed with a continuous circular coupling groove extending downwardly from the upper edge thereof and terminating in an enlarged-incross section chamber which defines said shoulder; and

wherein said head of said resilient coupling tab is larger in cross section than said groove whereby said head may be forced downwardly into said groove to be compressed and will then expand in said chamber to engage below said shoulder and couple said ring to said container.

7. Combination closure apparatus as set forth in claim 2 wherein said fastening tab and head are continuous to thereby lock said ring uniformly to said container.

8. Combination closure apparatus comprising:

a container formed on its upper end with an opening and including a first flange disposed adjacent said opening and formed with a first notch;

a lock ring surrounding said opening and including a second flange formed with a second notch;

coupling means coupling said ring to said container for relative rotation with respect thereto;

a cover for covering said opening and formed with a pair of spaced apart lugs for passage through said respective notches; and

perceptible indexing means on said container ring and cover for indicating when said notches are aligned with said lugs whereby said cover and ring may be rotated to align said notches and said cover may be rotated to align said lugs with said notches for removal of said cover.

9. Combination closure apparatus as set forth in claim 8 wherein:

the upper extremity of said ring is formed with a continuous downwardly facing peripheral shoulder; and

said coupling means includes a resilient coupling tab carried from said cover and formed with a head for receipt below said shoulder whereby said cover may be pressed onto said ring to snap said head below said shoulder and secure said cover rotatably thereto.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3669295 *Aug 21, 1970Jun 13, 1972Diamond Int CorpSafety cap for container
US3684116 *Feb 19, 1971Aug 15, 1972Duffy Daniel PChild resistent safety closure and container
US3693820 *Jun 3, 1971Sep 26, 1972Linkletter Robert PSafety closure cap
US3704802 *Jun 30, 1971Dec 5, 1972Schultz Robert SChild resistant safety cap closure assembly for a container
US3730371 *Feb 22, 1972May 1, 1973Corcoran ESafety closure
US3773203 *Jan 20, 1972Nov 20, 1973Gilison Associates IncClosures for bottles and the like
US3824815 *Oct 16, 1972Jul 23, 1974Darling WLabyrinth locking apparatus
US3828981 *Jun 28, 1971Aug 13, 1974Linkletter RSafety dispensing device
US3896958 *Feb 1, 1974Jul 29, 1975Robbins Douglas RSafety vial and cap therefor
US4506794 *Apr 27, 1983Mar 26, 1985Sterling Drug Inc.Child proof safety closure combination of the turn and lift plug type
US4991729 *Apr 18, 1989Feb 12, 1991Hunter Robert MElder-accessible child-resistant packaging
US5180072 *Jul 23, 1990Jan 19, 1993Oehlert Neil LSafety container and closure system with child resistance
US5297687 *Mar 12, 1992Mar 29, 1994Freed Anna BVirtual hinge
US5520296 *Oct 18, 1994May 28, 1996Freed; Anna B.Virtual hinge
US5702013 *Apr 6, 1995Dec 30, 1997Freed; Anna B.Virtual hinge
US5791504 *Aug 19, 1996Aug 11, 1998Magenta CorporationChild resistant container
US5829641 *Oct 15, 1996Nov 3, 1998The Procter & Gamble CompanyDispensing pump lock
US5927529 *Dec 31, 1997Jul 27, 1999Magenta CorporationChild resistant container
US5971215 *Sep 6, 1996Oct 26, 1999The Procter & Gamble CompanyDispensing pump lock
US7510094 *Jan 4, 2005Mar 31, 2009Rexam Closures And Containers Inc.Child resistant one piece push and turn closure
US8291525 *Sep 24, 2009Oct 23, 2012B/E Aerospace, Inc.Vacuum waste system and method for using the same
US8555879 *Oct 31, 2007Oct 15, 2013Fisher & Paykel Healthcare LimitedIntegrated humidifier chamber and lid
US20100065051 *Oct 31, 2007Mar 18, 2010Venkata Subbarao PotharajuIntegrated humidifier chamber and lid
US20100083433 *Sep 24, 2009Apr 8, 2010B/E Aerospace, Inc.Vacuum waste system and method for using the same
EP0526576A1 *Apr 23, 1991Feb 10, 1993Procter Syntex Health ProductsTablet dispenser with locking means.
Classifications
U.S. Classification215/206
International ClassificationB65D55/14, B65D55/02
Cooperative ClassificationB65D55/145
European ClassificationB65D55/14B