Alcoa announced March 5 that it has teamed with Etcetera Edutainment in Pittsburgh to develop a cutting-edge safety training tool that uses gaming technology to simulate hazards associated with operating mobile equipment in a manufacturing environment.
"When we look ahead to tomorrow's generation of employees, we know that they will be used to interacting through computers and will have grown up in the era of video games, the Internet, and virtual environments. Using this technology is an opportunity to engage them while communicating our important safety message," said Mohammad Zaidi, executive vice president, market strategy, technology and quality, Alcoa.
Unlike traditional training, Alcoa SafeDock lets the participant get behind the wheel, virtually, in simulated scenarios. "Our research shows that simulation exercises improve learning retention and increase knowledge transfer because they are visually engaging and provide hands-on experiences," said Jessica Trybus, founder and CEO, Etcetera Edutainment. "Alcoa SafeDock will provide employees with the opportunity to navigate a virtual, customized environment and react in real-time to people and events around them. People retain and understand more from interactive simulations than they do from passive instruction such as lectures or trying to absorb lengthy manuals."
"Because it's a virtual environment, everyone ultimately walks away injury-free -- despite the error traps and latent conditions embedded in the training tool to represent potential hazards one might encounter in a real-life scenario. The game essentially helps the player develop a better understanding of how to identify hazards and respond accordingly," said Jeffrey A. Shockey, corporate safety director, Alcoa. "This innovative approach allows employees to experience simulated hazards without jeopardizing their safety or those around them."