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Brigade Electronics looks to equip miners with collision avoidance tech

With new regulations around collision avoidance technology set to enter regional markets in the next decade, Brigade Electronics is optimistic about the future for its safety solutions.

The use of vehicle safety systems has proved to be extremely effective in reducing accidents and preventing fatalities, according to the company.

Emily Hardy, a Vehicle Safety Expert at Brigade, said: “Our safety solutions mean that worker safety can be improved with simple additions to vehicles. From camera monitor systems and warning alarms, to blind spot technology, collisions could be vastly reduced if drivers are equipped proficiently.”

Blind spots are one of the main causes of collisions involving deaths and injuries. Driver visibility, particularly on large machinery, can be limited due to various factors. These include lack of direct vision through front and side windows, lack of rear vision, operator position, bulkheads and vehicle size and type.

Alongside this, ear defenders, which reduce site workers’ ability to clearly hear approaching vehicles, and poor visibility due to adverse weather and dusty worksites, increase the potential for accidents.

Depending on the vehicle type and use, there are multiple technology solutions that can be fitted to enhance safety, according to Brigade.

“For example, vehicle-mounted 360° cameras, such as Brigade’s award-winning Backeye360®, provide operators with a birds-eye view around their vehicle at all times, which they can monitor via an in-cab display,” the company said.

“Wide-angle lenses on the systems’ cameras provide a comprehensive view of the area surrounding the vehicle that even large mirrors cannot match, completely eliminating blind spots.”

Meanwhile, radar obstacle detection, which uses continuous-wave radar technology, can detect moving or stationary objects around the vehicle delivering an audible and visible alert to vehicle operators, allowing them to act accordingly.

Heavy duty and able to operate even in high or low temperatures, radar obstacle detection is also waterproof and smoke resistant, and can be easily heard in noisy environments making it ideal for mining and quarrying, Brigade said.

Reversing and warning alarms are also vital devices to warn workers that a vehicle is manoeuvring. Multi-frequency smart alarms, using white sound technology, are highly directional. This means, in adverse conditions, for example if rain is pounding down, the warning decibel level will be increased.

Davesmen, a company which supports mines throughout India, has been supplying and fitting Brigade’s range of vehicle safety solutions to heavy earth moving machines.

In 2017, there were more than 1,000 recorded fatalities at Indian coal operations alone, according to Brigade. The extreme number of accidents in India led to an introduction of tighter laws and, in July 2019, the Motor Vehicles Amendment Bill was passed.

Shamit Dave, Managing Director of Davesmen, said: “Brigade’s products have been received well by the mining market. We have had excellent feedback on the Backeye360 system, especially when it’s coupled with Backsense® radars.

“Drivers like that they can see the blind spots surrounding the entire vehicle, which reduces the stress of driving in the mines as well as helping to prevent vehicle damage and repairs.”

As awareness grows for these safety solutions, it is hoped that this will provide a major boost for the growth of the industry.

Shamit added: “The future is filled with optimism. Vehicle safety has become a major part of this sector.”