If you think virtual reality is just yet another way to play video games, you might want to listen up. Though they were first introduced to consumers as a gaming device in the late 90s, virtual reality has been a, well, reality since the 80s. NASA first used the technology similarly to the way we know it today as a training device to provide simulations to astronauts in training. Though it's been around for roughly 30 years, we've seen a boom in the widespread usage of virtual reality in recent years, especially now that VR devices are cost-effective and easily attainable.
How's this relevant to construction? The American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP) have taken this technology and created an interactive application for safety training. As safety is an increasing concern due to the number of injuries continuing to rise in the construction industry, industry leaders are looking for solutions and this app may play a huge role in getting those numbers down. Bold statement, yes, but this application allows workers to train in a way they've never been trained before. The app itself follows ANSI/ASSP Z359 fall protection and fall restraint standards, simulating high-risk environments and providing workers with an immersive tool to test and apply their knowledge. In three to five minutes, users will experience being atop a two-story building and must identify fall hazards and choose the materials necessary to create a fall protection system, learning about anchorage strength, equipment limitations, and fall clearance while seeing it in action.
With the training capability success of this app, developers will continue to produce technologies geared toward the construction industry, aiding in other safety concerns and branching out to planning, building, and maintenance of structures. For more information on the application, please visit ASSP.