Sales Manager UK
Double warning system in shoe warehouse
Extra protection for deaf employee with ELOshield
Safety systems generally give acoustic and optical warnings to alert personnel to the risk of collisions in the warehouse - but if sounds cannot be heard in potentially dangerous situations, other measures need to be put into place. This was the case with shoe wholesaler P+P Schuhvertrieb GmbH, where a deaf employeee works at its central distribution centre in Heinsdorfergrund. By using ELOKON’s UWB based personal safety system ELOshield, the company was able to ensure maximum safety for all operatives in the warehouse.
Maximum safety – maximum productivity
The 1,000m² central distribution centre consists of two warehouses: a larger one designated for storage and, within this, linked by a staircase, is a smaller one where the packing of goods is carried out. There are 21 racking bays and a Jungheinrich ETV 214 reach truck looks after material flow in the larger hall, where two of the 15 aisles are narrow aisles. As a consequence, the safety distance between the most extended parts of the forklifts and the racking is less than half a metre on both sides. This obviously makes for high density storage and efficient picking, but it also poses considerably more risks for warehouse personnel compared to wide aisle operation. A second vehicle – a Hawker pallet truck, is also in operation in the larger warehouse.
A special solution for special conditions
As employee Sybille Großer is deaf, her own working environment is always quiet however noisy the surroundings are, and of course this means she cannot hear free roaming forklifts approaching. She is at particular risk when entering the large warehouse as in this section the forklifts are travelling down the aisles at high speed to keep to the best possible loading and handling cycles. In order to ensure the highest safety levels for his workforce and equipment, the MD of P+P Schuhvertriebs GmbH, Christian Penciulescu, set out to find a very special solution for Sybille Großer, which he found with ELOKON’s ELOshield product.
How it works
ELOshield is a radio-based identification system which automatically detects when an object or a person approaches a forklift’s danger zone. The ELOshield forklift module is installed in an easily visible location above the dashboard in the cab of the Jungheinrich truck. The read/reception unit transmits a radio signal, which is received by personal transponders and reflected. Ms. Großer wears her personal transponder – which is just the size of a smartphone – on an armbelt. On the basis of a so-called run-time measurement of the radio signal, the system continually detects the distance between the forklift truck and the person. If a specific distance is breached the forklift driver receives visual and acoustic indication of imminent danger and at the same time the transponder emits an acoustic signal as well as a vibrating alarm. Should the vehicle get closer, the vibrations become more pronounced. „This twofold warning system for Ms. Großer therefore gives her plenty of time to react to keep her out of danger “, said Christian Penciulescu.
Start-up in just one day
The system was installed and operational in just one day, having previously been configured with circular warning and protective zones. The warning zone is active from a distance of 3m, whilst the protective zone is active from 1.5m. On the day of installation, the truck module was fitted to the truck interface and Ms. Großer was instructed on the use of the personal transponder.
The installation took place in November 2017.