Remote metering techniques for assessing employee exposure and ensuring safety
Remote gas and solvent meters are mobile phone-sized devices that are carried in the employee's breathing zone, for example, in their breast pocket.
New features of the meters include immobilization and fall detection, employee location and sending automatic alarms about problem situations to the workplace’s control room, for example.
This research project examines the benefits of these features for the employee and the workplace and whether the use of these meters provides greater protection against exposure agents and accidents.
With the help of new remote metering technology and occupational hygiene surveys that comply with the standard SFS-EN 689:2018 + AC:2019, the aim of the project is to investigate
- whether the new remote devices are suitable for detecting the risk of gases and solvents posed to employees
- whether they make it possible to assess the short- and long-term exposure of employees
- whether the longer-term monitoring of employees' exposure (1–2 weeks) provides significantly more information than studies carried out in one working day.
Materials and techniques
During the study, a practical and generalizable operational model or good practices for the introduction of new technology in Finnish industrial companies will be made.
Results and effectiveness
The study will provide more information on whether short-term exposure (OEL15min) and whole-day exposure (HTP8h) limit values are paid attention to in the workplace and whether the exposure results of employees can be better utilized in the workplace to implement control measures.
For companies, the study provides information about the potential challenges of new technology, which must be taken into account so that the use of the equipment does not cause unnecessary harm to employees and the work community. The challenges may be related to the employee's privacy, the confidentiality of data collection, and the use and encryption of large amounts of data.
Finnish Institute of Occupational Health and The Finnish Work Environment Fund