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Enhancing industrial safety and performance through AI-driven innovation

Enhancing industrial safety and performance through AI-driven innovation
Industries like construction, oil and gas, mining, and manufacturing are essential components of the global economy, but their complex operations increase the likelihood of accidents and disasters.
Industries like construction, oil and gas, mining, and manufacturing are essential components of the global economy, but their complex operations increase the likelihood of accidents and disasters. These incidents can cause many challenges, ranging from worker safety to productivity issues. In the construction industry, for example, fatal incidents such as falls from heights and vehicular accidents have become common occurrences, resulting in significant safety challenges.
 
The oil and gas industry is no stranger to dangerous incidents, with fires and injuries from close proximity to equipment and hazard zones remaining all too common. Meanwhile, the mining industry faces a different set of risks, including injuries and fatalities resulting from working in confined spaces. In the manufacturing sector, the complexity of machinery poses a persistent threat to worker safety, with amputations from machine-related injuries a major concern.
 
“All these issues lead to lowering the productivity of the entire industrial process as work may need to stop until the issue is resolved, which causes delays in the overall timeline,” explained Surendra Singh, Marketing Lead at viAct. “Accidents also reduce the available workforce, which ultimately slows down the construction progress. Moreover, the unsafe working environment leads to psychological fear, which makes the workforce demotivated or disengaged, reducing work quality. Higher insurance premiums, legal fees, and other costs associated with addressing and resolving accidental issues add additional costs which lower overall profitability.”

Using AI video analytics to improve industrial safety

AI video analytics helps to improve industrial workplaces through various means. As algorithms continue to advance at a rapid pace, we are seeing unprecedented progress in the effectiveness of analytics in harsh working conditions.
 
Singh pointed out that their proprietary algorithms, for instance, help to detect many scenarios such as fall from height detection, confined space work monitoring, behavioral-based monitoring, unsafe act detection, hazardous area access detection, tower crane lifting detection, and PPE detection, to name a few.
 
“These algorithms collaboratively build viAct’s smart site safety system, which leverages the power of AI video analytics,” Singh said. “The system also enables instant alerts, which are sent out in real-time to notify the on-site and remote stakeholders of any risky situation via SMS, e-mail, or instant messaging apps. This helps keep stakeholders aware of their job site happenings to prevent safety compliances and associated productivity challenges.”

AI to augment traditional security

The integration of AI video analytics has emerged as a game-changing tool in industrial setups, capable of bolstering both safety and productivity. Utilizing cutting-edge algorithms to analyze video footage, the technology has the power to detect and prevent safety hazards before they can lead to accidents or injuries.

By offering real-time monitoring of workplace activities, site managers can effectively stay on top of potential safety hazards as they arise, generating automated alerts that notify safety personnel and remote managers. This streamlined approach allows for swift and targeted intervention when specific safety hazards are detected, ultimately keeping workers safer and preventing costly accidents from occurring.

“Furthermore, by analyzing historical video footage, viAct’s AI algorithms can identify patterns and trends that may indicate future safety hazards so as to take proactive measures to prevent losses,” Singh added. “Also, behavioral analysis like worker’s distraction detection, non-compliance of PPE while working at height, smoking in proximity to oil or gas tanks, etc. helps to ensure safety regulations and policies in a better and holistic way.”

Data collected and its use

The efficacy of video analytics solutions is based on a strong technical foundation. viAct's AI video analytics solutions utilize algorithms and software tools to automatically analyze video footage and extract valuable information from it.

“Any CCTV/IP camera installed in the job site can be connected to viAct’s AI system using its RTSP link. Video data captured using these cameras are pre-processed to ensure its quality for suitable analysis,” Singh pointed out. “viAct’s software analyzes the video stream to identify objects in the frame. This process involves the use of computer vision techniques such as edge detection, segmentation, and pattern recognition. Once the objects have been detected, the software tracks their movement across the frame.”

This helps to identify their behavior, such as speed, direction, and trajectory. Video analytics can be used to identify specific events or actions, such as people entering or leaving a room, vehicles stopping at a red light, or suspicious behavior in a public space.

The information extracted from the video stream is analyzed and processed to generate useful insights and statistics. This data, recorded in an integrated dashboard, can be used for decision-making, improving security and safety, or optimizing operations in a variety of industries.

Effective as infrastructure growth beckons

Many international companies of repute from different industries like construction, oil & gas, mining & manufacturing are now relying on AI analytics to improve safety and performance and enhance productivity. Singh spoke of some key clients that work with his company.
 
“In this connection, MTR, AECOM, ALEC, Shell, Equinix, and Singtel are worth mentioning,” Singh said. “Post-implementation of viAct’s AI Video Analytics Solutions, multiple oil & gas companies have witnessed a 90 percent reduction in the number of fire accidents. Similarly, companies have witnessed a 90 percent reduction in construction accidents & injuries; and a 95 percent reduction in fatal machine-related accidents in mining and manufacturing sites, that too in a manner which is 70 percent cheaper than human monitoring.”

Conclusion

AI is revolutionizing the way we approach industrial safety in the construction, oil & gas, and mining industries. By leveraging machine learning algorithms and sensor data, AI can identify potential hazards before they become accidents, enabling workers to take preventative action and reducing the risk of injury or loss of life.
 
AI-powered safety systems also provide real-time monitoring of worker behavior, equipment usage, and environmental conditions, helping companies identify patterns and trends in safety performance and implement targeted safety interventions.
 
While there are still challenges to overcome, such as ensuring that AI systems are transparent, explainable, and accessible to all workers, the potential benefits of AI-powered safety are clear. With continued investment in AI and a commitment to workplace safety, we can create safer, more productive, and more sustainable workplaces for workers in these industries.
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