We recently introduced you to the unique Tait GeoFencing solution available in all 9300/9400 mobile and portable terminals, and 9500/9600 portable terminals. You’ve seen how it works and what it does, but what does it mean for your organization? How can Tait GeoFencing enhance worker safety and efficiency?
The functionality Tait GeoFencing provides is broad and customizable, allowing each organization to use it as best suits their needs. The constant however, is that Tait GeoFencing can enhance safety and efficiency, and reduce the complexity of every-day tasks.
When you think of GeoFencing, you probably picture a broad terrain with virtual ‘fenced’ areas, like this:
Imagine a vehicle which has a long route travelling beyond the coverage of digital radio, into the countryside where there is only analog coverage. The driver needn’t worry, as with Tait GeoFencing, the radio can be programmed to automatically change networks based on GPS location, maintaining communications at all times. The radio can also send a text alert to dispatch to let them know this user is now outside of digital coverage.
Tait GeoFencing can also be used to provide reminders and indicators for drivers. As inner city speed limits are much more restrictive than in rural areas, Tait GeoFencing can trigger a small in-cab alert in low speed areas, and disable it in areas with higher limits. This offers the driver a subtle visual reminder to drive at an appropriate speed.
Drivers need a simple solution to make emergency calls if their vehicle is involved in an accident. Tait GeoFencing can be programmed so that emergency calls are automatically routed to the nearest emergency service based on location, and notifies dispatch that the vehicle is in trouble. Tait GeoFencing ensures prompt emergency help is available at the click of a button.
Similarly, our Mining clients are already implementing Tait GeoFencing in their LMR networks. It is currently being installed at a gold mine to create an exclusion zone around blasting activities for a more secure line of defense. If a vehicle were to venture within the perimeter of the area where they are detonating, an alarm would be initiated on the consoles of the Radio Operators. The radio user will then be informed to vacate the area immediately and blasting would be put on hold until the area is clear.
The mine is also planning to increase safety by GeoFencing hazardous areas. The land this mine operates on is geothermally active, and ground water is at boiling temperature. Exposed areas will be cordoned off, as well as geotechnical hazards such as high-walls, areas used for cyanidation, and active dump zones. As these hazardous areas constantly change, GeoFencing can be relied on by employees as well as contractors to avoid prohibited areas.
Many mines cover vast spaces and incorporate many functions such as a pit, processing plant, camp, bus network, rail network, port, and sometimes even an airport. A range of radio channels are therefore used by staff in these different areas. Tait GeoFencing has the ability to automatically change channels in the radio terminal when users enter a different location. This feature ensures all staff are on the right communication channels for the area they’re working in.
Utilities companies are always looking for ways to enhance safety. Electric utility workers are ranked within the top 10 most dangerous professions based on annual fatalities. The industry has put in place aggressive programs and policies to stress workplace safety and Land Mobile Radio Communications have been and will continue to be a critical link to utility worker safety.
Electric utility systems are complex, expensive, and require trained professionals. With Tait GeoFencing, a virtual fence can be created around facilities requiring a higher degree of training. This virtual fence can notify both the employee entering the facility and dispatch, should an employee without the proper training or certification enter a high-risk area. This type of system can help reduce injury, unnecessary outages, and equipment damage.
Many Utilities also cover an extremely wide area that might have different types of coverage (or no coverage at all). Creating GeoFencing zones around these coverage areas can enable the radio to automatically switch to the best type of coverage. You could also create an alert to go to the employee on the move and dispatch when they leave coverage completely. Users won’t accidentally be caught outside of coverage, and dispatch can keep tabs on workers to ensure they don’t stay outside of coverage for too long.
The management of incidents is a prime responsibility of first responders. With Tait GeoFencing, this process can be made simpler, and ensure everyone is in clear communication. Dispatch can create a virtual fence around an incident, with the radios of first responders automatically changing to the talkgroup or channel for that incident. This saves extra communications between dispatch and first responders, and removes a manual task for first responders, ensuring everyone is on the right channel in these critical situations. As easily as it was created, dispatch can also remove the GeoFence when the incident is over, triggering first responders’ radios to return to their usual settings.
For extra security in dangerous situations, Tait GeoFencing can alert dispatch that officers and responders have arrived at the scene of concern. This allows dispatch to automatically keep an eye on the safety of their staff.
Because Tait GeoFencing is based on GPS location and programming in the radio, these functions don’t need to put any extra strain on your radio network. In fact, they could in some cases continue operating without LMR coverage at all. Typical geofencing tools are centrally-based, and work by sending data back and forth between the control center and the terminals, creating a lot of network traffic. Tait GeoFencing however, is stored in the terminal. This means many functions can continue even if a network is down, and significant bandwidth is saved. Less data and network capacity is required, relieving stress from the network and allowing channels for critical voice communications.
The unique capabilities of Tait GeoFencing make it a valuable addition to any Tait solution. There are many different ways GeoFencing can enhance safety practices and procedures, and achieve operational efficiencies.
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