Every day it is amazing to experience how much technology improves our lives. And when you connect all that technology, it is even more mind-blowing. The connected technology at our homes saves individual’s money on electricity and improves personal security. Similar connected technology that creates a smart home is powering smart jobsites. This technology is critical for improving jobsite safety.
Wearable Technology and Personal Protective Equipment
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is a requirement on the jobsite. Due to the advances in wearable technology, the protection in PPE gear is taken to the next level. Sensors in wearable technology monitor vitals signs, track location, and activity to send alerts to supervisors of any abnormal activity or safety risk.
In construction, tracking sleep patterns can help gauge alertness and levels of fatigue. Because worker fatigue dramatically increases the risk of accidents and injury on the jobsite, construction tech companies are developing their own smart band to monitor their employee’s sleep patterns. Managers use this information to analyze worker fatigue levels and predict safety risk.
Hard hats protect workers in the event of falling objects or their own fall. A smart, hard hat would detect if a worker has fallen, pinpoint their location, and capture audio or video to ensure an immediate response.
Cameras installed on safety glasses provide an additional set of eyes to the worker. The live stream of video captured from the glasses allows managers to provide direction or inform of any safety risk that they may not be aware of himself.
In addition to falls, heat and dehydration pose another safety risk to worker health and safety. Vests equipped with sensors monitor the individuals’ temperature and heart rate. Any abnormality triggers an alert to the worker or supervisor to prevent any heat-related illness.
From ear plugs to ear muffs, there are many different types of hearing protection devices designed for the differing noise levels on a jobsite. While they may drown out the dangerous noise of your tools and equipment, they also drown out the important noise of surroundings such as warnings. Believe it or not, smart hearing protection can utilize machine learning. Adaptive hearing protection identifies common noise associated with work to cancel out those noises without impacting the individual’s situational awareness.
Drywall dust, chemicals, and paint are just some of the items that contribute to negative air quality on a jobsite. However, not all toxins are the same, so different toxins require different filters. Similarly, each different filter has its own lifespan. Smart respirators notify the user of which filter the user must use and when to replace the filter.
Sensors and Beacons
Construction companies can set up a smart jobsite using sensors and beacons. They allow for remote and continuous monitoring of a jobsite for any health and safety hazards. As a result, information on temperature, noise, air quality, humidity and more is available at any time. In the event of any hazard, the system alerts the workers in the area to evacuate or follow safety protocol. Most importantly, the early notifications enable you to minimize the safety risk to workers and damage to the overall project.
Many jobsites of today have the luxury of an enormous amount of video that is captured from drones and site surveillance. With the machine learning technology that is available, construction site video can be scanned and analyzed to flag any safety risks such as workers that are not wearing appropriate PPE gear. When safety managers are managing multiple projects, this allows them to identify any safety risk and take action on problems quickly.
Investment in Connected Technology
Construction companies can implement these safety technologies on their own or connected to others to keep jobsites and the workers safer. The data is captured and presented onto a dashboard for safety managers or supervisors to proactively monitor activity. The system continuously monitors the worker and jobsite even when a human cannot. The alerts and push notifications of these safety systems provide immediate notification. The improved communication dramatically improves response time. The more time that passes between the safety incident or hazard and the response, the greater the risk to the individual’s safety.
Because construction work is inherently risky and dangerous, anything that can improve the safety of workers is important. When workers are injured on the jobsite, they are not just a worker. They are dads and moms. Husbands and wives. Friends. Sons and daughters. Brothers and sisters. More importantly, companies investing in connected technology are investing in keeping our loved ones safe.