Robotic “Exoskeleton” Could Protect Workers From Injury

Industrial workers face some of the most dangerous working conditions in the country and throughout the world. Safety technology and equipment continues to evolve to protect these workers. A new kind of robotic exoskeleton is being developed to protect industrial workers from head injuries, back injuries, falls, hearing damage and even repetitive stress injuries.

Our Spartanburg workers’ compensation attorneys are dedicated to protecting the workers of North and South Carolina. We are abreast of new developments statewide, nationally, and internationally to promote worker safety. Though proper safety equipment can protect workers, many employers fail to take necessary precautions or to train employees. In the event of an accident, injury, or wrongful death, we are here to protect employee rights.

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According to a recent report from Verge, a new exoskeleton combines man and machine to keep workers safe and prevent injuries. European researchers have been developing “Robo-mate,” an exoskeleton designed to insulate workers from common workplace accidents. Experts report that the exoskeleton could be a viable safety tool for industrial and factory workers within the next three years.

The exoskeleton is fully equipped with a helmet and transparent visor, a headset for noise reduction and a vocal human voice interface. There is a system for supporting movements in the back and joints. It has intelligent sensor points for movement recognition. To prevent against heat stroke and other fatigues, the exoskeleton has passive protective gear. There is a camera for quality control and supporting maintenance built into the suit.

As the features suggest, the exoskeleton will be best suited for workers who are in repetitive motion positions, offering a “hybrid approach,” which is ultimately supported by robotic parts. The product is backed by the European Union, which has already provided over 4.5 million Euros in funding. It may be purchased and manufactured by Fiat and Indra, the French vehicle recycling company.

Even the inventors concede that the exoskeleton has its drawbacks. The robotic machine is a full-body suit and could be cumbersome to wear. Employees may also hesitate about wearing a camera that would record their daily routine and could be used against them. The exoskeleton may have an additional benefit for employers. Having additional protection and recording equipment could insulate against liability in the event of an accident.

Despite these drawbacks, scientists believe that the exoskeleton is the future of worker safety in industrial design. With proper adjustments and tweaks, the exoskeleton could prevent thousands of repetitive stress injuries and accidents. Ideally, the equipment would work to prevent work-related injury caused by repetitive stress to the hands, neck, back, and joints.

While advancements are made in safety technology, American workers will continue to suffer injury and death as a result of industrial accidents. If you or someone you love has been injured in a workplace accident, you may be entitled to compensation. It is important to consult with a workers’ compensation advocate as soon as possible to document your injuries and take action to recover the financial support you are entitled to.

If you have been injured at work, contact the Lee Law Offices at 800-887-1965.

More Blog Entries:
Appalachia Worker Killed in Coal Pillar Accident, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Blog, August 16, 2013

Silica Risks in North Carolina Workplaces OSHA’s Latest Focus, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Blog, September 10, 2013

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