In France as in many other European countries, clearly defined legal frameworks require that operators who are working alone have to wear personal alert safety systems.
PASS STANDARDS EXAMPLES
Requirements for PASS devices are controlled by standards associations, such as the National Fire Protection Association in the United States and the British Standards Institution. Standards published by these institutions establish minimum specifications, such as frequencies and audible alarm and pre-alarm levels, duration of time after lack of movement, intensity of visual alarm…
National Fire Protection Association: NFPA 1982
This standard specifies that the device will go into pre-alarm mode after 20 seconds of inactivity and full alarm mode at 30 seconds of inactivity. The alarm can also be activated manually. The pre-alarm is required to reach a maximum level between 100 dba and 110 dba in six seconds. The primary alarm must have a minimum level of 95 dba at one meter and be able to maintain the level for at least one hour.
British Standards Institution: BS 10999-2010
This standard specifies a lack of movement for 30 seconds will cause a 10 second pre-alarm audible signal. If no movement occurs during this period then the unit will lock into full alarm. The unit can be manually set to full alarm by pressing a push-button.
ISOLATED WORKER PROTECTION
A PASS (personal alert safety system) – or also called DSU (distress signal unit) – is a device used by one or several workers who are out of sight. This alert system oftentimes features 2 alarms:
- Manual or voluntary alarm activated by the user to ask for rescue in case of slight injury, attempt of aggression…
- Automatic alarm activated in case of mandown and motionless situations, sudden increase of heat (explosion or fire), pullout…
Several versions are available from standard audiovisual alert unit up to enhanced versions with alarm report on a controller and GPS localization for immediate rescue intervention.