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Managing Safe Distances

April 24, 2020
New wearable device helps employees keep a safe distance at work.

As workers across North America in manufacturing, warehouse and food processing continue to execute critical projects amid COVID-19, working environments and basic human nature can make it difficult for them to follow recommended physical distancing standards. Watching their own employee base navigate these issues, three manufacturing veterans, Jarred Knecht from Promark Electronics Inc, as well as John Soares and Steve Zimmermann from CMP Advanced Mechanical Solutions, united their companies' expertise and co-founded Social Distancer Technologies Inc. to create, with support from the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP), the Social Distancer, a wearable product designed to provide workers with a means to easily maintain a safe two meter distance between one another.

"It's our responsibility to keep our employees safe at all times, and especially during this outbreak," says Jarred Knecht, co-founder and COO of Social Distancer Technologies Inc. and President of Promark Electronics Inc. "But most workers have to interact collaboratively with one another at some point in their day, and it can be difficult to maintain physical distancing practices. The Social Distancer was developed as an easy solution for workers to continue their projects while maintaining proper safety standards during COVID-19."

The Social Distancer is a credit-card size, one-inch thick patent-pending device that instantly calculates the distance between employees. It has three methods of alert — visual, vibration and tone — to instantly notify employees. If employees are within 2.5 meters of one another, the device will flash red, vibrate and audibly alert the employees to move farther away.

"The COVID-19 landscape is something new to all of us. We brought together our experts, with advisory support and research and development funding from NRC IRAP, to help our employees not only stay safe, but also be able to work freely and comfortably," says John Soares, co-founder and VP of Social Distancer Technologies Inc. and EVP of CMP Advanced Mechanical Solutions. "With the Social Distancer, employees can go on with their workday without the need for any awkward conversations, unexpected proximity issues, or discrepancy about what exactly six feet is."

The Social Distancer lasts 10-12 hours on a single charge -- roughly the duration of one full shift.

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