Smart Hardhats & Offshore Head Injury Protection
The sight of offshore workers wearing hard hats has become ubiquitous over the years. These important pieces of safety equipment help a work protect the most important part of their body from some of the most unexpected accidents.
Hard hats provide protection from:
- Blunt force trauma
- Electric shock
- Falling objects
For decades, the hardhat has been the simplest form of protection from unexpected accidents. They’ve protected countless workers from severe offshore injuries and have saved the lives of many others. Now, some companies are looking to make hard hats protect workers more than just the unexpected—they’re working to protect them from the expected as well.
Smart Hardhats in the Offshore Injury
According to a recent report, some companies are working to make hardhats a tool that can help prevent accidents rather than simply protect workers after one has happened.
These hardhats have technology built into them such as:
- Temperature sensors
- Humidity checkers
- GPS modules
- SOS buttons
- Proximity sensors
Using tech such as proximity sensors and GPS modules can help companies track offshore workers and keep them out of restricted or dangerous areas. If a worker gets too close to danger, their hardhat can inform them before it becomes an issue. Also, hardhats with panic buttons and GPS capabilities have the potential to help rescuers locate workers after a significant accident.
Will the Offshore Industry Use Smart Hardhats to Improve Safety or Interfere with It?
Currently, it’s estimated that the smart hardhat industry will be worth about $1.2 billion by 2025. Besides safety benefits, producers of smart hardhats assert that their products can help companies track workers and improve productivity. While this might be a practical application of these techy hats, it’s important that they don’t become a way for companies to exhaust workers with a heavy-handed focus on productivity tracking. Though smart hardhats can track safety metrics, they currently don't track exhaustion—something that could become a problem as employers focus too much on numbers over the well-being of workers.
If smart hardhats are the way of the future, finding a balance between safety and analytics will be important.