Equivital LifeMonitor to be used by Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service to improve fire fighter training safety

Published:  04 March, 2010

Hidalgo Limited has announced that the Equivital Physiological Monitoring system has been chosen for use by Cambridgeshire Fire & Rescue Service (CFRS) in an effort to improve fire-fighter safety.

This is a significant milestone for Hidalgo’s smart sensor technology and is the result of close liaison and feasibility work with CFRS over the last six months.
The Equivital system will be used to monitor the wellbeing of instructors during the prolonged periods they spend wearing breathing apparatus and associated protective clothing in hot training environments.
Whilst all fire-fighters wear breathing apparatus regularly, instructors are at an increased risk of the cumulative effects of prolonged exposure to these conditions. They currently receive regular medical checks by the Cambridgeshire Occupational Health team, but no real time monitoring is undertaken. By using the Equivital system, data can be viewed in real time and collected for later analysis.
The lightweight and unobtrusive EQ01 LifeMonitor is worn by the fire-fighter and key physiological data is transmitted wirelessly in addition to being recorded within the smart sensor on-board memory. The parameters measured include heart rate, respiratory rate and effort, temperature and biomechanical data on activity and movement, which rather than being used singularly is used to understand overall heat stress levels and fatigue status.
Dan Martin, Training Instructor at CFRS said: “We have a commitment to safety and duty of care towards all our staff. The effects of prolonged exposure to heat and time spent in breathing apparatus gear are well documented and taken seriously by Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue service. That is why we are working with Hidalgo to implement the Equivital system to enable us to quantify the effects and to improve management of fire training while keeping our trainers safe.”
Dr Ekta Sood, Hidalgo’s Clinical Director, added: “The Equivital LifeMonitor technology has been proven in military and research applications for some time. We are committed to applying this ground breaking technology to other fields and are delighted that Cambridgeshire have chosen to be the first fire and rescue service in the UK to adopt the Equivital system.”

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