Innovation Award for Life-Saving Asbestos Monitor & Detector
ALERT PRO Connected, the newest model in Alert Technology’s range of real-time airborne asbestos monitor and detectors, scooped this year’s Safety Product Innovation award at the Safety & Health Excellence Ceremony as hosted by television personality, Tess Daly.
Alert Technology Ltd, asbestos safety innovators and developers of the world’s first and only range of real-time monitors and detectors, launched their second-gen model in January 2023. The ALERT PRO Connected is an IoT device with patented technology designed to help prevent prolonged exposure to airborne asbestos, which remains the world’s leading cause of occupational cancer.
The ALERT PRO Connected distinguishes airborne asbestos from non-asbestos fibres with 99% confidence providing the world’s first and only real-time alarm. Equally important is the intelligent information ALERT captures and catalogues. Users have real-time access to time-stamped particle and fibre counts, asbestos warnings and alarms, GPS tracking and personalized sampling / project info. Key safety information and alarms are available directly from the unit with more detail available to view on the online portal ‘ALERT Connect’.
The awards are run by The British Safety Industry Federation (BSIF) – the UK’s leading trade body within the safety industry – to recognize innovative new products and services that will contribute to improved occupational safety and health, ultimately reducing injury and accidents in the workplace.
Presenting to the BSIF’s independent judging panel on Alert’s behalf was Global Sales Manager, Dan Rushton. A former asbestos consultant with over a decade’s experience of the asbestos industry, Dan successfully demonstrated the uniqueness of the ALERT PRO Connected and its many real-world health and safety benefits based on his in-depth technical product and practical asbestos knowledge.
The judges, all experts in health and safety, came from the British Safety Council, GMB Union, British Standards Institute and Health & Safety Matters. The awards ceremony was held at The Vox, Birmingham on 26th April, where Alert’s award was collected by Managing Director Loretta King on behalf of her father Alan Archer, founder and CEO of Alert, who has recently recovered from an asbestos-related illness himself.
Daniel said of ALERT, “our technology not only provides real-time alarms, it also supplies timestamped data enabling a granular review of asbestos risk not possible until now. Accessible in real-time anywhere in the world via our data platform, ALERT Connect, it clearly illustrates increasing and decreasing fibre and particulate levels and asbestos exposure events. This data is then available to view in in easy-to-understand graphs and reports.”
Dan is quick to point out that whilst ALERT provides a valuable new data set, it is not intended as replacement of traditional asbestos testing methodology but that it instead ALERT fills a gap in existing practices. “We see the ALERT PRO range becoming the new best practice by offering an additional layer of safety data to use in conjunction with the legislative methods such as PCM, PLM, SEM & TEM which remain the evidentiary requirement. The concentration of airborne fibres as captured by air sampling remains necessary to comply with existing regulations. ALERT steps in to bolster this information by highlighting in real-time, short-term, or sporadic fibre releases, captured every 10 seconds. These types of exposure events would go undetected by traditional methods if they failed to impact the overall concentration from the entire sampling period”, explains Dan.
Despite being a highly regulated substance, asbestos deaths and illnesses are not reducing, they are on the rise, a frightening statistic largely due to the increased risk from in-situ asbestos deteriorating with age or being disturbed in the drive to retrofit and upgrade aged properties to improve carbon efficiency. The risk from repeated low-level asbestos exposure from old buildings is becoming increasing apparent in the changing demographic of asbestos disease victims. No longer just an “old man’s disease”, increasing numbers of less obvious professionals like teachers, doctors, nurses and recently MPs highlight that this is not a problem that will be going away anytime soon and requires action. (Source: Mesothelioma UK ‘Mags Report’ & recent Parliamentary Debate on 19 April.)
Any building constructed prior to 1999 is likely to contain asbestos which includes 90% of UK hospitals and 86% of schools. As a result, the UK is seeing nurses and teachers 3-5 times more likely to develop asbestos-related diseases than the public (Source: ResPublica’s ‘Airtight on Asbestos’ Report) as highlighted in recent press coverage in The Times, Sky News and BBC News.
Loretta commented, “Alert Technology truly celebrates winning this award and thanks the BSIF for their recognition. ALERT is hugely personal to us, and we want to continue innovating and improving asbestos safety in the workplace. Environmental monitoring is commonplace for many other occupational hazards, so why should we not focus on the world’s biggest occupational carcinogen. Our family is incredibly lucky that Alan’s asbestos-related illnesses were treatable and that he did not develop mesothelioma, 100,000s of others around the world have not been so fortunate.”
For more on The BSIF’s support and guidance on occupational safety issues, or to become a member please visit: https://www.bsif.co.uk/