NEW PROVIDENCE, N.J.(CBSNewYork) — A New Jersey middle school’s robotics team was feeling especially proud on Monday.

As CBS 2’s Christine Sloan reported, the students won a prestigious award for an invention that police will now use during storms.

The students from the Academy of Our Lady of Peace in New Providence, were beaming with pride after taking second place in a national competition sponsored by Lego.

This year’s theme was ‘Nature’s Fury’.

The group’s invention is called the ‘SOS’ which is short for Stickler Of Safety. It’s made of PVC pipe and will be used by first responders in New Providence. It will allow them to spot uncovered manholes on flooded streets.

“It is supposed to help people out of situations, and measure the depth of water,” one student explained.

The stick is made of different colors which will even allow color blind people to use it. A patent on the invention is pending.

The students interviewed their town’s police chief to find out what types of things didn’t work.

“He gave his patrols a four-foot wood stick to make their way through flood waters here in town. They found that the wood would mold and warp,” teacher Alice Tyler explained.

The students were given a $250 grant for the project, but won’t be getting any money from the national competition.

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