US materials handling equipment supplier Hyster is offering "Litum," a proximity tag to help maintain social distancing in any working environment
Greenville, NC, USA: Hyster Company has introduced a proximity tag to help promote compliance with social distancing requirements. The system uses wearable tags that vibrate whenever personnel get too close to each other, based on input from proximity sensors and predetermined distance settings. Earlier this year, the port of Antwerp adopted a "Smart Bracelet" for such purposes, and Hyster is working on the same track.
Hyster is not linking Litum specifically to its lift truck products, but is appealing to a wider audience. “From the shop floor to the conference room, businesses are taking action to address health and safety concerns as people get back to work,” said Steven LaFevers, Vice President, Emerging Technology, Hyster Company. “The proximity tag solution is an effective choice to promote social distancing throughout an organization, offering a simple yet effective technology platform at an attractive value. The alert effectively grabs user attention, but remains hushed to avoid fatigue and frustration that might risk employees abandoning the technology.”
Implementing the proximity tag does not require use of Wi-Fi or a cellular network, with tags instead communicating via ultra-wideband technology. When the sensor detects one or more individuals within 6ft of one another, all tags in proximity vibrate to alert wearers of the need to keep their distance. The warning distance parameter can be pre-set - eg 1.5m, 2m - in accordance with local requirements.
To prevent personnel from selectively turning off their sensors to avoid continuous social distancing enforcement, companies can use customizable shut down procedures to only allow sensors to power down when appropriate. Advanced functionality can be unlocked by integrating the proximity tag solution with the Hyster Tracker telemetry system for FLTs.