New Wearable Devices Can Help Reduce Workplace InjuriesNovember 23, 2018
Warehouse work can be very physically demanding, which means that workers are at risk for a wide range of injuries, including shoulder, back, and musculoskeletal injuries.
A new technology, from the company Kinetic, utilizes a wearable device that can monitor workers’ movements using sensors and artificial intelligence. The sensors will be able to detect when a worker is using an unsafe body position to lift a heavy object, or twists their back in a way that could cause an injury.
Ideally, this wearable device – which is roughly the size of a pager – will help track workers’ movements and prevent some of the common injuries that can occur in the warehouse environment.
Creating a Wearable Device
After watching his own mother suffer from serious back injuries from working as an elderly care nurse, the co-founder of Kinetic was inspired to create a device that would help reduce workplace injuries.
The wearable device, which is called REFLEX, attaches to a worker’s belt loop. The REFLEX device uses sensors to create a map of the worker’s body. The sensors will then measure things like changes in height, hip movements, back movements, and other body positions in order to detect specific movements that could cause injuries.
Back injuries alone account for over 38 percent of all work-related injuries that cause the employee to miss work, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Testing the REFLEX Device
After partnering with a number of warehouses, Kinetic co-founders received feedback about the device, including the fact that employees did not want to download the work app onto their personal phones. As a result, the REFLEX has a display screen, so that it is not necessary to pair it to a Bluetooth-connected device.
No calibration is needed, and workers can leave the device at the warehouse. When they come to work the next day, the can put the fully charged device back on before they start their shift.
Data Usage Concerns
One concern the creators of the device have is the potential for the data to be used for negative purposes. For example, they do not want employers using the data collected by the device to be used for disciplinary purposes, or to fire someone in order to avoid paying for Workers’ Compensation medical fees.
However, they have found that the companies they are currently working with have a strong safety culture and a mutual trust between managers and workers.
Ultimately, warehouse workers tend to receive minimal safety training, so the owners of Kinetic see this as an opportunity to provide a product that can help to address this issue.
Baltimore Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Protect the Rights of Injured Warehouse Workers
If you have suffered an injury while working in a warehouse, it is in your best interest to contact the highly skilled Baltimore Workers’ Compensation lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton. Injuries are common among warehouse workers, particularly musculoskeletal injuries. We will work closely with you to address all your questions and concerns about the claims process. Our experienced legal team will secure the maximum financial benefits you deserve so that you can focus on recovering from your injury. To schedule a free, confidential consultation, call us today at 844-556-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.