Electronic safety device for construction workers.
NIOSH 2004 Apr; :1-12
This research included the development of two electronic safety devices: (i) Moving Hazards Warning (MHW) device for eliminating 'struck-against' accidents, and (ii) Edge Detector (ED) device for eliminating 'fall' accidents. Ultrasonic sensors powered by small rechargeable batteries, and controlled by microchips were packaged into two prototype safety devices: (i) A moving Hazard Warning (MHW) Device, and (ii) An Edge Detector (ED) Device. Each of the safety devices can be built into the rear side of the tool-belt or waist-belt. The devices will warn the worker via sound and vibration alarm whenever he/she is closer than a safe distance from the approaching equipment or the edge of the roof/open-sided floors, respectively. A device using radio frequency (RF) sensor was also tested. In all U.S. private industry, 119,250 (4.2% of the total) injuries occurred due to the workers 'caught-in / between-equipment', in 1996. In the same year, 6,112 work-related fatalities occurred. Of these 6112 fatalities, 236 fatalities occurred due to falls, and 429 were caused due to workers caught-in / between equipment. This research developed electronic device prototypes to eliminate these two accident types. In a preliminary survey of workers, 93% of them said that they find the devices useful and will use them. Assuming a 50% utilization of the developed products, the anticipated savings are estimated to be $500 million per year in construction industry alone. The utilization of these products by all private industry, which will happen with time, will save a total of $2.0 billion annually. During field tests in high winds the prototype devices did not give expected and reliable results. A similar but lesser effect was seen while equipment noise was present. More research is required to overcome these environmental problems.
Construction; Construction-workers; Safety-equipment; Equipment-design; Ultrasonics; Roofers; Floors; Occupational-accidents; Warning-devices; Construction-equipment; Control-technology; Personal-protective-equipment
ViTech Systems Inc., 126 Viscount Drive, Williamsville, NY 14221
Final Grant Report
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
ViTech Systems Inc., Williamsville, NY 14221