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Safety Trends: Going Mobile

Impossible as it is to believe, our world is more connected now than ever before … and it’s going to keep getting more connected. According to Silicon Valley giant and internet pioneer Cisco, more than 70 percent of the population is expected to have mobile connectivity by 2023. Nearly 300 million mobile applications will have been downloaded as well. And the Internet of Things (IoT) will more than double its machine-to-machine (M2M) connections by 2023, says Cisco’s 2020 Annual Internet Report. It’s noteworthy that the COVID-19 pandemic is increasing these numbers to levels that were never anticipated. This is true across all industries, including construction.

We’re seeing this steady increase specifically in connectivity for a multitude of reasons, but the main one is quite simple: the customer is happy. As technology emerges that’s faster and able to store more data, it becomes intuitively efficient and practical for the end user. Customers are more likely to adopt the use of technology that’s easy to learn and offers a solution to an existing problem. With so many relying on technology now for work, school, staying connected to friends and family, and entertainment, it make sense to look toward incorporating it into daily security needs as well.

Although a dirty construction site full of primitive tools and raw materials may seem like an unlikely place to find the latest Cloud-based app, that’s exactly where Ramtech’s REACT system is designed to be used. At this time, construction sites may be fully staffed, running with a skeleton crew, or closed due to current COVID-19 mandates. This uncomplicated system, when coupled with WES3 wireless emergency alert units, provides a sophisticated and adaptable safety solution for all job sites regardless of operational status. It gives property owners, project supervisors, and safety personnel the ability to receive alerts for a variety of events in real-time. The REACT app is then able to connect the site administrators to emergency services when seconds matter.

REACT combines innovative wireless technology, cloud-based data, and an easy-to-use mobile phone app to create a fully integrated emergency response system. The REACT system transforms smartphones into the ultimate safety tool with welfare check-ins and escalations, GPS location tracking/geolocating/geofencing technology, advanced Lone Worker feature, and an instant connection to key personnel who need to act on specific alerts. These options can be especially useful during times when fewer workers are on site or are spaced farther apart for distancing measures.

Construction sites are vulnerable to a number of threats. The combination of waste and combustible material, wooden framing, and a lack of fire protection assets can turn one small ember into a full-scale blaze. Many sites lack basic security measures other than temporary fencing and a few warning signs, and sections of fence are often moved for convenient access to workers and deliveries. An unsecured site is at risk of not just arson but also vandalism, theft, and trespassing accidents. Consider, also, contractors working in isolated areas of the site who might require access to emergency services at any given time.

Wireless WES3 units can be strategically placed around the site according to the fire prevention plan and wherever temporary vulnerabilities and hazards exist. In the event of a burglary, injury, fire, or other emergency, an alert can be manually raised or detected by sensor via the REACT app. Then, notifications are sent through the cloud to specific personnel. Those personnel decide what, if any, action to take to mitigate risk.

This allows key stakeholders to stay involved every step of the way throughout all phases of the construction effort. The information goes only to those who are involved; no one else has access. It offers total transparency for teams to demonstrate compliance when necessary and keeps a record of every communication, event, and action taken in order to appease insurance companies and assist in investigations.

To make this even easier, WES3 and REACT are fully customizable. Ramtech creates bespoke solutions using their technology and the site’s needs, offering accurate, specific, personalized notifications, customized receivers, and alerts and branding that match that of the end user. In addition, Ramtech provides dedicated experts to make sure the system is fully optimized along with guidebooks, how-to videos, and technical support.

Any security system works best when its individual components work together cohesively. M2M technology through IoT now gives those components the ability to instantly and reliably stay connected and “speak” to one another and to key personnel, greatly increasing the safety of employees and decreasing the risk of theft and property damage. In the event of an emergency, WES3 and REACT can increase the speed at which the scene is reached by emergency services or a fire is extinguished thanks to accurate location information. It is possible to achieve the goal of comprehensive protection from both internal and external threats on construction sites of all sizes, no matter how unique the needs and no matter the operational status of the project.

Adoption of cloud-based technologies continues to expand as we become more comfortable with the capabilities and security of the cloud, and as unforeseen changes to our way of life become the new normal. Ramtech is dedicated to the innovation of safety technology and is passionate about going above and beyond basic legal requirements to decrease the risk for thousands of workers and buildings every day.