UK tech firms invited to join regulatory sandbox for industrial safetytech
UK industrial safetytech companies are being invited by the UK government to help in creating the “world’s first” regulatory sandbox for the industrial sector.
The project is being headed by Discovering Safety, a project delivered by the UK’s health and safety regulator, Health and Safety Executive (HSE) alongside tech firm Safetytech Accelerator, and others in the construction industry.
‘Industrial Safetytech (IS)’ such as artificial Intelligence (AI), visual analytics, augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), internet of things (IoT), sensors, wearables, drones and robotics, can redefine approaches to health and safety management, according to Discovering Safety, yet there are barriers to industry adoption which need to be better understood so that they can be broken down.
A sandbox of this kind will allow the evaluation and testing of innovations in a simulated environment. In this way, regulators, industry, and innovators can come together to develop successful solutions and overcome barriers to IS adoption.
The project is scheduled for eight months and will begin this month with £12 million in funding awarded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS). Design and build of the sandbox is already underway with a launch planned for April.
“We will seek to generate and harness new thinking, methods and technological approaches to improve regulatory delivery and performance in the construction industry. This, in turn, will enable innovative new products and services to come to market for the benefit of all,” commented Steven Naylor, technical lead on the project.
Discovering Safety is inviting key construction industry organisations from across the UK to contribute to the sandbox and share their experiences of working with IS.
Contributors will work together to identify specific health and safety challenges that will give real-world focus to the project. Then, together with technology specialists and subject matter experts, the organisation will consider ways in which adoption of technology can be increased.
As the project progresses, reports, articles and case studies will be made available. “The first step is to define the challenges to be built-in to the sandbox,” said Discovering Safety. These will be developed by the technology providers, industry and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) then presented in a report.
The project is set to conclude in Autumn 2023 with a final event that will bring together contributors and key stakeholders to review conclusions and outputs.
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