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Detectors now


Workers need to have easy, unencumbered access     

By Rick Pedley


      afety managers should know how important it is to keep workers mobile in the field without leaving them vulnerable to hazardous gases. Workers have been using portable gas monitors for years, especially when working in confined spaces and on-site locations with questionable air quality. This allows them to move around the worksite as they please while still monitoring their surroundings for hazardous gases.
   The technology behind portable gas detectors is getting smarter while the devices themselves are getting lighter. Employees can now wear portable gas monitors on their person, as a wristwatch, on their collar or on the strap of their harness. This makes it easier for workers to move around in the field, hands-free. They can focus on their specific tasks without worrying about their gas detection equipment getting in the way.

Lighter and smaller than ever before
    Size matters when it comes to technology. The batteries, smart sensors, and chips that power gas detectors are getting smaller, which can be an advantage in the field. Even some 4-gas portable monitors now weigh less than a pound, with many under eight ounces. The lighter the device, the less weight workers have to carry around on the job.
   If the device is too heavy or overly cumbersome, workers may have trouble completing the task dor they may remove their gas detector entirely. Portable gas detectors are designed to be worn in the breathing zone, so the device takes in the same air that the person is breathing. They may come with clips that securely attach to the person’s collar or lapel.
   Workers also need to keep their detectors within view and easily accessible in case the alarms go off or there’s an emergency. They should be able to quickly see that the device is on and connected without taking their eyes off the task at hand, which increases the risk of accidents and injury.
   Managers should take advantage of these trends by outfitting their teams with lightweight, portable gas monitors that stay firmly attached to the user. Workers should feel comfortable using this technology in the field without sacrificing productivity or safety.

If the device is too heavy or overly cumbersome, workers may have trouble completing the task or they may remove their gas detector entirely.

Wearable gas detection
    Wearable technology has become the new frontier in gas detection devices. People can carry their phones on their wrists like a watch, and the gas detection industry is now following suit.
   Wearable technology is all about convenience and portability. Instead of carrying a separate device, the user wears the item on their person like a piece of clothing. The idea is that people would normally wear these items, so surely the next step will be to have them benefit their lifestyle.  
   The same is now true of portable gas detectors. There are some detectors on the market now that allows for hands-free work. Workers that work with their hands will appreciate being able to wear their gas detector on their wrist, like some models available. This keeps the device in view and in range. The person will be able to see that the device is working without taking their eyes off their work. They can also quickly check current gas levels just by lifting their wrists.

Rick Pedley, PK Safety’s President and CEO, joined the family business in 1979. PK Safety, a supplier of occupational safety and personal protective equipment and manufacturer of their own new FR line Grit, has been operating since 1947 and takes OSHA, ANSI, PPE, and CSA work safety equipment seriously.  PK Safety's customer service can be reached at 800-829-9580 or online at here.

July 2022

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VOL. 56  NO. 7