A safer mine today
(and for the next generation)
Safety is the highest priority in mining. It is why we are investing heavily in safety technology that aims to eliminate or prevent an operator landing on the injury pyramid, and working diligently to realize our vision for the future of mining — one in which clearance remains between people, equipment, objects, and the environment at all times.
Explore our current initiatives to learn more about Wenco’s vision for a safer mine.
The 5 Levels of Mine Safety Controls
At its root, safety involves managing exposure to the many hazards present in a mining environment. To offer authoritative guidance on managing exposure to hazards, the U.S. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health originated its hierarchy of controls, seen here.
In our commitment to advancing mine safety, Wenco is developing solutions that raise the control options available to mine operations ever higher on this pyramid.
Our system integration, fatigue monitoring, and Open Autonomy initiatives all move the state of mine safety closer to its ultimate goal — eliminating or preventing exposure to all hazards.
A philosophy of openness and continuous improvement
Wenco pioneered a philosophy of openness with our customers and partners. Since 1983, we have enabled open access to our system data that mines use to directly inform continuous improvement initiatives.
Our open philosophy enables third-party systems to integrate with our onboard display, allowing mines to reduce distractions on equipment and improve operator situational awareness — a factor key to reducing safety incidents.
Wenco technology collects 1,000s of points of operator and equipment data while maintaining due protections for security and privacy. Analysis and reporting from Wenco offers rich insight into operator actions, behavior, and choices that informs site policies, creating a positive feedback loop of data-driven continuous improvement.
Towards predictive fatigue monitoring with SmartCap
Operator fatigue contributes to 65% safety incidents at mines each year.*
In 2021, Wenco acquired SmartCap Technologies — innovators of the world’s leading fatigue monitoring wearable. This system observes operators in real time to assess their ability to resist sleep, empowering them to manage their fatigue and reduce the risk of safety incidents.
While other fatigue monitoring technology merely reacts to the state of operator alertness, our roadmap for integrating SmartCap technology is focused on proactive fatigue detection and microsleep prediction.
Beyond Level 9 collision avoidance
Collision avoidance systems are the state of the art in mine safety, impelling constant clearance between equipment, people, objects, and the environment.
The Earth Moving Equipment Safety Round Table (EMESRT) has established nine levels of incident preventative controls for collision avoidance technology. At level 9, their guidelines require technology to proactively take control of machine operation to mitigate potentially unwanted events.
Wenco is working with leading-edge technology partners to deliver Level 9 collision avoidance. Our vision intends to merge commercial autonomy solutions and advanced SLAM technology with Wenco’s knowledge of mining-specific events to originate the most advanced mining collision avoidance technology available.
Open Autonomy — the ultimate in mine safety
Other solutions offer robust improvements to mine safety, but hazards can only be fully eliminated through a Level 5 autonomous haulage system and its place in an automated material movement workflow.
Automated systems and autonomous vehicles decouple mine personnel from equipment, objects, and the environment. In this way, they most effectively eliminate exposure to hazards and establish unparalleled safety for all mine personnel.
Ongoing autonomous projects, our partnership with Oxbotica, and our open engagement with other solutions providers are currently working to advance Wenco’s vision of Open Autonomy — an interoperable ecosystem based on open standards that facilitate end-to-end mining process automation.
Our current initiative will enable both manned and autonomous vehicles to operate simultaneously in the same location with no additional risk of potentially unwanted events. For more information, explore our vision for Open Autonomy.
Learn more about Wenco today
Interested in Wenco mining solutions? Reach out today to find answers to your questions, access more product information, or request a demo.