The rise of the safety helmet has grown from quiet, to loud, to deafening in the last 5 years. Contractors are mandating these now, and for good reason. Additional protection from all angles of impact, along with a chin strap that retains the helmet and prevents secondary impacts, also prevents your head protection from becoming a projectile in the case it falls off your head while working at heights.
Malta Dynamics, a manufacturer of safety products since 2015, and producer of top-selling and top-rated hard hats felt a burden to create a helmet that fit the needs of workers right now, fit the budgets of these companies that are making the switch, and to make a product that protects better, but helps in other areas as well.
Malta Dynamics’ Type 2 APEX Safety Helmets have been for sale since late 2022 but underwent a 2-year R&D process before that, which included many scrapped designs and field tests that forged the APEX helmet into what it is today. The latest development from Malta Dynamics on this helmet, is a partnership with European Technology company, WaveOn.
Field tests on these helmets uncovered the need to correct something with safety training documentation. Workers and Safety Managers mentioned the need to get all new training stickers to apply to the helmets, these stickers represent a completion of training and a way for supervisors to know of a workers’ clearance to perform tasks on job sites or have access to certain areas. They become scratched, illegible, and cover up areas on the hard hat that prevent a proper inspection of the life-saving gear. There was one company who carried a clear sleeve with a card that contained training certifications, stuck to the hard hat, and another who created custom QR codes. Both expressed these were better than stickers, but after a few weeks, a number of the QR codes were un-scannable, and more than a few cards were lost, and no matter what was used, the worker’s training records had to be maintained in 2 or more locations, creating inefficiencies. A sub-surface smart tag was identified as the solution.
“When taking the long road to developing these advanced head protection devices, we knew we had to offer something that could solve problems, save time, and be totally optional; an enhancement to safety that also cleans up a murky process, even when performed well”, said Greg Brown, President of Malta Dynamics since 2020.
“We started looking at partners who could offer a solution you couldn’t scratch off, and one that didn’t re-invent the wheel. We looked at industrial documentation programs and found that SiteDocs is the most widely used; so, we wanted to ensure compatibility with that, and any URL linking to cloud-stored records. We spoke to half a dozen companies, and it became clear that WaveOn was the partner for this effort.”
Brown was adamant this feature would not carry a subscription fee but would be included in every Type 2 APEX helmet from Malta Dynamics.
Jurgen Schmerler, CEO of WaveOn, expresses his excitement about the partnership, stating, "This groundbreaking partnership with Malta Dynamics is a testament to our shared commitment to enhancing safety through innovation. By integrating NFC technology into safety helmets, we're not just revolutionizing protective equipment - we're shaping the future of safety standards in the construction industry."
So, how does this all work? WaveOn’s NFC technology works with all camera-equipped smartphones and does not require an app to work. According to Malta Dynamics’ tutorial, you wave the camera of your smartphone over the WaveOn insignia near the crown of the helmet, and a browser window appears. You then tap the window, and the Malta Dynamics/WaveOn dashboard appears. A user will register their helmet and establish login credentials. Once logged in, you can click the SiteDocs logo to link to your records or input a URL linking to any other storage location. Safety managers can also batch-register the devices before issuing the helmet to employees.
Once connected, training files can be maintained by the safety manager in SiteDocs (or other) and populate in real-time. The link established by WaveOn directs the one scanning to the master file, so no stickers, no cards, no maintaining the same record in two (or more) places.
Brown added, “Field Tested, Field Approved, that is who we are and why our products do well with folks. This will help the ones who specifically have issues with training documentation and provide a cost-free way for many other companies to step up in that area. There are so many OSHA violations and fines that wouldn’t happen with proper documentation, companies who use Malta Dynamics APEX Type 2 helmets with WaveOn will certainly see less violations.”
Interested in finding out more? Check out https://maltadynamics.com/