Case Study: Automatic Mustering with RTLS

Worker Safety

Ensuring all on-site personnel are accounted for during an emergency evacuation is a huge health and safety challenge. Many industrial sites still rely on traditional manual methods to account for who is on-site at any one time.

Workers in process industry environments face a variety of risks over and above their counterparts in other industries. ‘Hazards of the job’ are that much more serious, with a higher potential risk. Falling objects, fire, and explosion of flammable gas and dust are potential threats and whilst large-scale disasters are thankfully rare, they still occur. The problem with traditional manual methods is brought further into focus when you consider the size and complexity of a facility like a tank farm, a refinery, or large petrochemical plant.

Improving Worker Safety with RTLS

Enhanced Worker Safety

It might seem obvious, but identifying where workers are, their current level of risk, and making sure that they are accounted for is a key challenge during an emergency. Emergency response teams have little time to make critical decision to avoid loss of life during an evacuation.

Enhanced worker safety often includes providing workers with emergency call buttons with which to request aid or alert the control room to a developing situation, as well as automatic mustering of workers during emergency evacuations. Being easily able to distinguish which workers have reached designated muster points and which are still in the line of fire is key information to inform actions when things go wrong.

Background

This article discusses how a major oil and gas company solved this problem, so they could automatically muster workers in the event of an emergency.

Mustering Requirements

The goal for the client consisted of two main elements:

  • Firstly, the client wanted to accurately locate all personnel on site in real time to reduce the time it takes to locate distressed workers and lost contractors in need of help.
  • Secondly, the client wanted to improve their mustering process, making it easier to check that all workers are safe and identify anyone missing in emergency situations.

An RTLS Solution

Workers were assigned intrinsically safe iTAG100 Wi-Fi RTLS tags with call buttons, so they could request help if needed. Contractors were also given an iTAG100 when on site. The MobileView software showed worker location in real time, and the Instant Notifier software provided quick alerts whenever a call button was pressed.

Exciters were also used at designated muster points, detecting employees gathered in each area. This allowed the client to gain real time information about who was safely mustered and who was not yet in a safe area. This solution reduced the potential for human error.

Workers and contractors can quickly request and receive help when needed, with rescue teams dispatched without delay to their location.

Extronics RTLS Solutions

Extronics RTLS solutions are based on standard Wi-Fi networks, therefore, eliminating the need for proprietary networks. Customers can leverage the same Wi-Fi network for other applications, such as data transfer or communications – consequently, resulting in greater ROI.

If this is something that you think can be tailored to your organisation, please contact our team of experts today to discuss your use case. Contact us using the form below, email info@extronics.com, or call +44 845 277 5000

 

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