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Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy

versão On-line ISSN 2411-9717
versão impressa ISSN 0038-223X

J. S. Afr. Inst. Min. Metall. vol.110 no.1 Johannesburg Jan. 2010




DOHEMS®-technology to improve risk assessments and early detection



C.J. Badenhorst; N. Van Wyk

Anglo Platinum




The scope of this project was to research, develop and eventually produce a personal occupational hygiene and safety exposure monitor system to assist in recording and analysing various stress factors that could affect the health, wellness and safety of employees, i.e. that could result in injury or ill health of workers, create stress build-up within individual workers that could negatively affect worker alertness and safety, and, may even result in permanent disability or death. Utilized systems at the time were all reactive, whereas the DOHEMS (Proactive Digital Occupational Hygiene and Safety Exposure Monitoring) System enabled the measurement of exposure (and associated risk) in a proactive manner via real-time exposure and digitized recordings. The idea of the development was to create a unit that is so cost effective, small and light that every worker can use a system on a daily basis. The development will eventually replace current, bulky and expensive monitoring equipment. The device must be a portable battery operated device and monitor the immediate working environment by periodic sampling for vibration, noise, toxic gasses (NO/NOX/CO/VOC, etc.), body temperature and heart rate. The samples must be time and date stamped, utilizing a real-time clock (RTC) synchronized with the closest regional secondary time source and related to synchronized real-time video captured samples. These samples are then recorded onto a rugged non volatile storage device with the capacity to store a vast number of samples covering the entire working shift of eight (8) hours plus. The system has been fitted with a clear visual local alarm indication system, indicating any excessive exposures or stresses, for the worker's supervisor to respond to. This system allows for a pro-active approach. The system is also a wireless system (to the external environment) so as to not affect the mobility of an employee and flameproof to allow for use in explosive environments.

Keywords: safety, digital, exposure, monitoring, proactive



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