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New Robotic Vest To Help Protect Contractors Against Injury?
The construction industry in the UK is one of the most hazardous. The most recent report from the Health and Safety Executive found that there were 137 employees killed at work between 2016 and 2017, 30 of which were in the construction sector – the second highest amount.
The main types of fatal accident for employees were revealed as being struck by a moving vehicle, falls from height, being struck by a moving object, being trapped by something collapsing or overturning, contact with moving machinery and contact with electricity.
Carrying out risk assessments and making sure that employees are properly trained on a regular basis depending on the tasks they’re doing is one way of prioritising health and safety among your workforce. But focusing on the equipment being used could also prove beneficial.
Esko Bionics, based in Richmond in California, has just developed a new robotic vest that has been designed to help the construction industry tackle some of the challenges it faces.
The Esko Vest will help support upper body strength and assist with the carrying of heavy items, designed to help prevent injuries from occurring on building sites. According to the Daily Mail, it’s similar to the Iron Man suit seen in the Marvel comic book series, much like a smaller version of an exoskeleton, allowing people to hold tools at difficult angles and spend longer lifting materials without putting excessive stress and strain on their bodies.
And from March next year, there will also be a Zero G body suit available that’s intended to help builders use heavy power tools by making them weightless through the use of a gravity balancing arm.
Speaking to the Times, senior vice-president for business development Tom Mastaler said: “Exoskeletons will allow staff to work for longer and more safely and help to solve a demographic crisis in the construction industry. They’ll also change forever the kind of body types that can work in heavy-duty construction.
“In future women will be able to do the jobs that men now do because of the support that exoskeletons can provide their bodies to handle great weights. Future generations will also look forward to not suffering the kind of damaging body problems today’s constructions workers face.”
But it’s not just construction workers who could benefit from this new vest and body suit – they can also be used to help people with paralysis relearn how to stand upright and balance again. The exoskeleton system features assist software that allows therapists to make adjustments tailored to the individual so that each patient is able to use their existing strength – adjustments that can then be altered as the patient’s strength increases.
Are you on the hunt for industrial scaffold services? Get in touch with us here at Burflex for a chat and a quote if so.