Firefighters and HazMat workers have a very tough job. They're frequently in heavy gear, in unfriendly atmospheres, and working hard. Unfortunately, this combination of equipment, environment, and job stress means that frequently they're operating at the limits of human endurance. VivoMetrics Inc. (www.vivometrics.com) developed the LifeShirt, a real-time physiologic monitoring system to keep tabs on how they're faring while they're on the job. The system's chest strap monitors breathing, heart rate, activity, posture, and skin temperature continuously.
In a recent development, VivoMetrics Inc. has teamed up with RAE Systems (www.raesystems.com), manufacturer of safety and security sensor networks, to combine VivoMetrics' LifeShirt 300 with RAE Systems' AreaRAE wireless network system that detects hazardous gases and radiation. With this combined system, data from the LifeShirt are transmitted in real time via a RAELink2 wireless modem to a remote command center. ProRAE Remote PC-based software then continuously displays both sensor and physiological data, allowing the commanders to make informed decisions about their crews.
Andrew Behar, president of VivoMetrics Government Services, says, "The LifeShirt 300 allows field commanders to assist firefighters while they are in the field and remove them from potentially harmful situations."
THE CHALLENGE Monitor vital signs and detect environmental hazards