IoT system helps contractors keep their distance on the jobsite

Triax Technologies’ wearable Proximity Trace device can be used for contact tracing.

April 19, 2020 |

The Proximity Trace system's TraceTag can be attached to a harthat. Image: Triax Technologies

Many contractors are asking themselves how social distancing can be executed practically on jobsites so their workers can operate safely. As expected, products are starting to emerge that address these concerns.

For example, SmartVid.io, according to industry news reports, has paired computer vision with its artificial intelligence interface, known as Vinnie, to identify workers who might be working too closely to each other or in packs larger than 10, which would violate OSHA’s social distancing guidelines. 

Triax Technologies, which specializes in Internet of Things (IoT) worksite platforms, has launched Proximity TraceTM, an IoT system that provides social distancing alerts and contact tracing—identifying workers with whom confirmed COVID-19 cases came into contact over a period of time—through a wearable device.

The device, which can be attached to a hardhat or worn on the user’s body with a lanyard, offers added protection for essential workers during the pandemic, and can help contractors get their field employees back to work safety.

“Our solution is designed to ease the burden on workers to maintain appropriate distances as part of new safety practices that very well could become the next normal,” says Robert Costantini, Triax’s CEO.

Glibane Building Company, one of the industry’s leading GCs, is in the process of rolling out Proximity Trace devices to its active jobsites. “Worker safety is our top priority, so we were thrilled to hear that our technology partner Triax developed a solution to address the social distancing and contact tracing problems the industry is facing during COVID-19,” says Jason Pelkey, Gilbane’s senior vice president and Chief Information Officer.

The system’s details include:

•TraceTag, a real-time audible alert for close contact interactions, which the device records for contact tracing. The device’s rechargeable battery has weeks, even months, of battery life.

•Cellular gateways for logging headcount and attendance. These data are transmitted to the company’s cloud.

•A real-time audible alert and flashing red LED that activate when worker interaction is registered. This function can be turned off for contact tracing only. And an escalation alert beeps for timely distance correction.

•A data dashboard for worker profile management, device management and administration, and for producing contact tracing reports. The data include timestamps, the duration of interaction, and number of participants.

Proximity Trace does not rely on a client’s WiFi or internet service.

Triax states that its goals for Proximity Trace are to provide a proactive system to support and condition workers to comply with social distancing guidelines. The system can help companies passively collect worker interactions and duration to automate and digitize contact tracing. The system provides information needed to guide COVID-19 protocols at essential facilities. And it supports companies’ efforts to limit the spread of infection by identifying so-called “Subject 1” candidates who have been in contact with people whose COVID-19 exposure is confirmed.

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