Thermal cameras, connected to black-box devices for calibration, are being used in a variety of applications. Production line monitoring in temperature-sensitive manufacturing or processing, security in transport hubs and fire detection are three examples. This year, a fresh application has been realised; temperature monitoring to reduce the spread of the Covid-19 infection.
Many UK businesses were forced to close or furlough staff in March. There was no way in which teams could operate effectively whilst social distancing. As lockdown restrictions are being lifted, risk assessment and protective measures are being put in place.
One of the main symptoms of any viral infection is an elevated temperature and Covid-19 is no exception. For this reason, taking a simple thermal reading before letting employees into your premises can be an effective part of a coordinated approach to managing the risks.
Arbor Technology offers an accurate thermal monitoring camera, which is simple to set up. Magnetic mounts mean the E-Guardian S408 can be fitted to the ceiling above the entrance to a building or attached to a free-standing tripod. It takes individual forehead readings from 2-meters and uses a red/green light to instantly indicate whether that person has a raised temperature.
Not every infection will result in a raised temperature and not every person with a high reading will have Covid-19. Social distancing rules, improved hygiene facilities and PPE should still be in use.
If the red light shows, it is advised that the individual is denied access to the building and returns home for 7 days in self-isolation. Individuals can also be directed to the NHS website, which provides information about symptoms and testing. These actions will help to reduce the risk of spreading the virus and protect other workers and their families.
In recent weeks, the number of new Covid-19 infections has been declining in the UK. There are exceptions and there have been a growing number of Covid-19 cases in food factories (Factories blamed for spike in Lincolnshire COVID-19 cases – Daniel Jaines, the LINKCOLNITE, June 10, 2020 ). Employees working in food processing in Wales and Lincolnshire are among those who have contributed to a spike in cases (Coronavirus: Almost 100 staff at food factories test positive, BBC, June 18,2020).
Production lines are a high-risk environment, where people typically work in close proximity. There is regular handling of items as they pass along the process. When it comes to infection control, robust risk mitigation measures need to be applied.
Furloughed and temporary staff will have concerns about returning to work. They need to earn a living, yet will want to protect their health. By assessing risks and implementing measures to keep all staff as safe as possible, employers can dispel some fears.
In factories and warehouses, the cost of installing an E-Guardian S408 thermal monitoring camera is considerably less than the cost of high absenteeism or the factory being forced to close when a spike in cases is detected. At a time when rebuilding public trust is especially heightened, the protection of the company reputation is also a serious consideration.
Arbor Technology recognises that warehousing and factory process can increase or decrease the ambient temperature. The E-Guardian S408 is designed for indoor use, for temperate ranges between 15 and 30 degrees centigrade. It is supplied with a black-box device, which enables calibration to the environment. For accurate readings, it should be positioned away from other heat sources.
If you would like to discuss the suitability of the E-Guardian S408 thermal monitoring for your application, please contact Gavin Wilkinson at Arbor Technology UK 01908 310100 or 07377 550879.