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design thinkers

Safety Enhanced on Construction Jobsite: New Pilot Program

Jobsite safety has always been one of SLAM Construction Service’s (CS) fundamental priorities since its inception in 1996. We have found that in order to effectively measure the success of our safety program, referencing historical data is critical. In partnership with Triax Technologies, SLAM CS recently participated in a pilot program at a private school in Connecticut. Our implementation of the Triax Spot-r zone-based safety solution has allowed us to monitor jobsites in new and innovative ways, while keeping safety discussions positive and a priority to our tradespeople. 

Proper Planning and Real-time Execution…

The Spot-r wearable devices use a proprietary mesh network to identify employees and subcontractors when they are within range of the system’s standalone zone-based safety system. While working on the private school campus, SLAM CS needed to identify tradespeople working only in our allowed construction area.

As a result of the COVID pandemic, the campus was relatively quiet; however, safeguarding that we did not have tradespeople navigating beyond our construction jobsite was critical for SLAM CS and the client. When campuses resume normal activity, we will have the ability and confidence to monitor that our tradespeople have remained within the allowed construction area.

Beyond the ability to identify the overall locations of tradespeople, this technology also provided the tools to monitor crews’ workload and the quantity of staff reporting. We were also able to limit the numbers of staff on the jobsite, enabling us to plan work assignments and projection schedules more efficiently and accurately.

For example, if we assigned our mechanical contractor to be installing on the second floor of the addition one week, we could see if the plan was being matched in the field and the work was getting done. If some of the crew remained in this area from the previous week’s assigned area, we were able to investigate why and use more up to date information to adjust our approach to the schedule, moving forward.


Safety wins…

The Spot-r wearable device has also introduced us to a variety of safety-related discussions. For the most part, safety manuals and programs have historically been strengthened by past experience, which means learning from mistakes. Each clip gets assigned to a specific person. When there is an emergency, the worker’s approximate location is shown on the dashboard system, reducing the medic’s search time.

The Spot-r solution alerts our project team in real-time, if a worker experiences a fall from over 6’, and if a worker presses their alert button on the bottom of the Spot-r clip. Every time an alert went off at the Connecticut school project, our field staff was required to investigate.

In addition to real-time alerts, the solution also collects safety data below a 6’ fall. For example, a few workers were consistently jumping down off the edge of the foundation wall throughout the day. After reviewing the behavioral metrics, we identified what they were doing and raised the level of the backfill in the area to limit the height of the fall, focusing the Toolbox Talk discussion to small jumps and knee injury prevention. This continuous monitoring changed the culture of the jobsite and as a result more natural conversations about safety occurred in a more positive setting.

If a total evacuation were to take place, our field team can quickly activate all of the devices into an emergency evacuation mode. This is light years ahead of the old “air horn” alarm technology. Assuring that all tradespeople wear their device, we can easily identify if the structure has been fully evacuated. The dashboard is our backup, detecting if someone is still in the building. This information is helpful for first responders, showing the number of people in the building and their zone location.

The Triax Spot-r solution is a superior technology offering SLAM CS construction managers a safety-first jobsite moving forward. The system has shown us there is value in real-time data for scheduling and overall project management.

We are now able to educate our teams on what is deemed unsafe and risk-taking on a jobsite, while proactively monitoring our safety program before an incident occurs.

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