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The Internet Of Things Is Making Construction Smarter And Safer
Construction sites are busy places. There are many moving parts consisting of equipment, operators and stakeholders even on small-scale projects. It’s essential then for businesses to leverage the value of Internet of Things (IoT) technologies and telematics. It allows them to tackle the efficiency, safety and budgeting issues that are maybe holding them back.
Communication Is Key
Operational delays and budget blow outs can be common. These can be due to lack of visibility and fragmented communication. Mobile devices already allow immediate interaction between staff on-site and in the office, but IoT means even your equipment can communicate with everything around it. It bridges the gap between what happens across the business among all employees. For example, when work is complete clients may query if invoices are accurate, telematics provides proof of what was done and when. Sensors installed in equipment and vehicles record start and end times, ensuring operators work within permittable hours. They also track machine internals such as engine hours and fuel usage. If something isn’t working correctly, smart devices can flag it early via SMS or email alerts, so it’s addressed before a potential breakdown (and delay) occurs.
Safety Prone, Not Accident Prone
It’s no secret that construction can be a dangerous business. Operators can be in high places and handling large machinery. According to figures from Safe Work Australia there were 35 on-site fatalities in the last year. Reducing dangers wherever possible is essential for peace of mind while also maximising the work being done. Vehicle and asset tracking means nearby equipment stays at a safe distance. Alerts will trigger as soon as something gets too close and operators can move accordingly. Likewise, speeding or harsh braking is monitored and recorded so operators and managers are aware of behaviours that put everyone on-site at risk.
Wearable technology is also useful when it comes to minimising accidents. Sensors turn a simple lanyard into a distress button. This is a more effective alternative when a phone is out of reach and assistance is urgent
The IoT isn’t about cramming sensors into every object for the sake of it. It’s about discovering new ways for technology to help improve efficiency and safety. It’s no longer an option to not embrace technology on the construction site. With high risk of accident, injury and falling profit margins mean it’s time to invest in making your site smarter.