Increasing productivity and protecting crews in dangerous environments: J W Speaker puts the spotlight on safety

Good lighting can help improve safety levels in challenging working conditions, while also allowing increases in productivity. New technology provides a durable solution able to cope with tough working environments, while also drawing little power
May 1, 2021
J W Speaker is dedicating to developing innovative, high-performance vehicular lighting solutions for OEM and aftermarket customers around the world. Specialising in LED and other emerging lighting technologies, J W Speaker is proud to design, manufacture, and assemble products in Germantown, WI.
J W Speaker is dedicating to developing innovative, high-performance vehicular lighting solutions for OEM and aftermarket customers around the world. Specialising in LED and other emerging lighting technologies, J W Speaker is proud to design, manufacture, and assemble products in Germantown, WI.

Lighting is a critical component to worksite safety: the operating conditions in industrial, construction, and mining environments represent a unique set of challenges throughout the jobsite.  Proper lighting improves visibility, making workers less susceptible to hazards and ensuring the safety of bystanders in high-traffic zones. Safety remains at the forefront of daily operations, and worksite lighting is no exception, even during peak production periods.

The introduction of LEDs has transformed the worksite lighting industry. They have a longer lifespan, are more efficient, and are better for the environment.  The USA based company J W Speaker has disrupted the status quo for LED lighting technologies, becoming the go-to company, producing many of the world’s first LED lighting solution packages for construction, mining, and quarry sites around the globe, as well as the transportation sector.

Founded in 1935 by John W Speaker, J W Speaker Corporation is focused on developing innovative high-performance vehicular lighting solutions for OEM and aftermarket customers around the globe.  Specialising in cutting-edge technology LED and other emerging lighting technologies

Today, the capacity of LED light technologies has expanded to make lives easier and operations safer.  Safety is key. Being seen and being able to see, saves lives and reduces equipment damage. Mining and construction sites are notoriously tough on lights, which is why J W  Speaker designs and engineers LED lighting to withstand the toughest conditions. According to a report from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 46% of employees in road work zones were killed in pedestrian vehicular accidents. These accidents include events involving vehicles and mobile equipment. The Centre for Disease Control (CDC) found that 76% of injuries in road and highway work zones were a result of transportation events, like a vehicle striking a worker in the work zone.

As J W Speaker’s head of engineering, Gary Durian, who has worked with the company for nearly 30 years, points out, “The improvements in LED technology have gotten to a point where we can easily provide more light with fewer LED lamps and with less power output than original halogen lamps.  The evolution of LED lights has given J W Speaker the ability to develop the technology into safety and warning lights for several segments and markets.”

The Model 529 LED red stripe light creates an attention-getting safety zone by projecting a long, red line to designate unsafe areas for workers.
The Model 529 LED red stripe light creates an attention-getting safety zone by projecting a long, red line to designate unsafe areas for workers.

Coloured light from LED’s can be focused into a bright spot, stripe, strobe or image to provide a warning to other machine operators and workers on the ground.  The superiority of LED lights extends beyond the improved light output as the durability is exceptional; LED lights are not prone to failure from vibration or shock, making them an outstanding option for harsh environments. This is a significant improvement from halogen, which is prone to outages from filament failures.

Durian provides an example of the evolutionary technology. “A large mining shovel’s rotation or swing is not symmetrical on the central axis. This means that if a haul truck pulls up too close to the shovel, the back end of the shovel might hit the truck.  So, our global crew developed the Model 529 LED light solution that can define a “keep out” zone, allowing haul truck drivers to see defined keep out areas: as long as they’re not in the red zone, they will not be hit by the shovel when it rotates.”  J W Speaker designed the Model 529 LED red stripe light to create an attention-getting safety zone by projecting a long, red line to designate unsafe areas for workers.

Additionally, the company has also produced the world’s first industrial solar LED marker light, as well as the Model 526 dual white anti-glare LED work light. This is critical on a mining site, as the operator can toggle between a standard white, for bright visibility, and a warm white, to cut through dust and fog, hence improving safety for the mine.

“We’re in the construction and mining industries to integrate technology that improves productivity and safety,” Durian says. “We’ve listened to the ongoing issues mining sites experience from crews around the world, where they’re battling operating with dense dust and limited visibility.

“It’s taken us a while to effectively address all the requirements in a robust mining LED light, but we’re now the first in the market to introduce a dual-white colour light,” says Durian.

The Right Light for Every Jobsite

Dual White, Anti-Glare for Mining: There is no doubt that dense fog and dust at quarry and construction sites pose various safety risks to its equipment operators as well as workers in the surrounding areas. Being able to swiftly adapt to worksite conditions, the Model 526 Dual White Anti-Glare LED Light enables the operator to use a toggle switch to shift between a standard white, for bright visibility, and a warm white, to cut through dust and fog, enhancing visibility in any conditions.   

Keep Out / Keep Away from Equipment and Vehicles: Every job site requires full focus to avoid hazards and accidents. Vehicle lighting plays an essential role in protecting equipment operators and pedestrians from the potential dangers of moving machinery. The innovative Model 529 LED Big Red Stripe Warning and Safety Light is the ideal solution for identifying dangerous areas on construction and mining job sites.  

Creating Safe and More Productive Workplaces: Operating equipment and machinery in dark environments requires workers to rely on consistent and quality lighting to remain safe and productive while working. The Model 792 LED Compact Work Light is engineered with tight spaces in mind. Sites can support accident prevention by replacing inferior halogen lights with the Model 792 Compact Work Light.

World first

Save More Than Energy: It is easy to provide warning indication of equipment, hazards, or traffic changes by putting lights anywhere - even if no power is available.  J W Speaker’s first-in-the-world Solar LED Flasher lights are bright, easy-to-mount, designed to make obstructions and hazards clearly visible, even from extended distances. A robust impact-modified acrylic housing withstands the harshest conditions, making it an ideal LED light for mining and construction sites where power sources are unavailable. The Solar LED provides visibility up to one mile (1.6 km) and up to 11 candela brightness. Because the light is solar powered it provides clean, reusable energy.  

A Whole New Kind of “Keep Out” Zone: An industry first, the Model 793 LED light is the industry’s only UL recognised safety light, designed with three colour configurations to create the best solution for each industry and application.  Large machines, like rollers and excavators, have blind spots and are capable of fatally injuring crew members. This high-powered LED light creates keep-out and keep away zones ensuring there is a visual barrier between moving vehicles and workers.  Steering clear of blind spots sounds easy. However, it can prove difficult when equipment is moving in and out of the worksite.

Avoid Blind Spots for Ultimate Safety: Construction and mining sites are dangerous places as safety hazards lurk around every corner. Vehicles and equipment around the jobsite are constantly moving and often have blind spots to the rear and back of the vehicle.  The Model 4415 LED Work Light has dual lights, side view mirror mount with split screen camera and monitor for enhanced safety, mounted inside the cab to monitor conditions around the entire vehicle.  

Pushing the boundaries in transportation

In addition to creating cutting edge safety and warning LED lighting packages for construction and mining applications, J W Speaker also pushes the boundaries in leading LED technology for automotive, motorcycles and transportation vehicles.  

The patented SmartHeat system’s thermal conductive grid
The patented SmartHeat system’s thermal conductive grid

For instance, J W Speaker developed the Adaptive 2 Series headlights for motorcycles for improved visibility in any riding situation, especially when cornering.  Statistics from the US Department of Transportation show that the hours between 6 pm and midnight can be the most precarious for motorcycle riders as darkness can make riding more difficult. Using on-board sensors and advanced electronics, including gyrometers, the Adaptive 2 Series headlights determine a motorcycle’s bank angle in real-time. With that data, the individual LEDs in the headlight illuminate as needed, sending light into the rider’s direction of travel. Those well-positioned LEDs aim the headlight’s beam – low or high –illuminating the roadway, ditch-to-ditch as the bike moves through the corner.

J W Speaker also developed the SmartHeat technology, an LED intelligent automation system that de-ices the lens or headlight, keeping it clear of snow and ice during inclement weather without driver involvement.  Falling snow, sleet and freezing rain becomes a hazard for drivers, even at 30mph and usually a very serious hazard at highway speeds and above. Snow and ice  can accumulate quickly on surfaces, including headlights and taillights, significantly compromising performance. The patented SmartHeat system’s thermal conductive grid stays on to prevent ice, snow and condensation from collecting on the lens, even in the most extreme temperatures and wintery conditions. 

To learn more about these and other industrial safety products visit J.W.Speaker.com


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