Developers of futuristic construction equipment are working toward work sites on which individual employees are automatically alerted whenever their safety is at risk, and before accidents occur. Wearable devices will also warn workers and their employers or supervisors of potential injuries, fatigue or musculoskeletal injuries. Wearable devices are more feasible than what most North Carolina construction workers might think, and this might significantly reduce the number of workers' compensation claims that are filed each year.
Audible alarms or vibrations will serve to warn workers who come too close to leading edges, or when they are at risk of being struck by mobile equipment. Wearable devices can warn individuals when they are at danger of injuries caused by excessive or unsafe lifting, bending, reaching or twisting, and a warning will sound when workers near exhaustion. Exoskeletal devices will provide additional strength and endurance, and visual wearables can help with training.
Visual devices facilitate simultaneous observation at different locations to allow troubleshooting by technical staff when remote employees have problems. Wearable devices can even alert rescue workers and lead them to injured workers in the event of a work-related accident. The technology is unobtrusive and can be clipped onto or fitted to glasses, hard hats, visors, belts, shirt collars or footwear.
These developments will likely bring about a significant reduction in the numbers of construction accidents and subsequent workers' compensation claims. North Carolina workers in this dangerous industry might find comfort in knowing that the state-regulated insurance program will continue to cover their medical expenses and lost wages. Legal counsel can assist with the benefits claims process in pursuit of maximum applicable compensation.