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Seeing Machines fatigue system wins BHP contract

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Seeing Machines has won a $1.5 million order for its Driver State System which uses driver eye tracking technology to monitor fatigue.

It comes after a 17 truck trial at BHP's Pilbara iron ore operations.

According to the company 110 trucks will implement the technology, which uses eye tracking and facial recognition technology to measure truck drivers fatigue.

It will be installed on the 87 truck fleet at Mining Area C and into the 23 truck fleet at Eastern Ridge.

In a company statement Seeing Machines CEO Ken Kroger said "the mining industry is acknowledging and supporting the advances being delivered with the DSS technology, and the integral role that eye tracking technology has to play in keeping their operators safe.

"The technology is fast becoming indispensable in the industry as a means to maximise worker safety and we are glad that this, along with our absolute commitment to the highest levels of service for our customers, is being recognised. This order re-affirms our confidence in our expectations for the full year

 "We look forward to working with BHP Billiton at its Iron Ore sites in the Pilbara, supported by Caterpillar and by WesTrac in Western Australia".

In May this year the company signed a massive strategic agreement with Caterpillar to roll out the technology, known as the Driver State System (DSS), in Cat's machines, as part of the manufacturer's wider MineStar system.

At the time Cat said "the alliance with Seeing machines is a natural progression of Caterpillar Global Mining's work to mitigate fatigue issues in mining activities".

It is reportedly working on 20 mine sites across 1500 vehicles.

During a Caterpillar presentation in Brisbane last month Cat demonstrated the technology to Australian Mining, explaining that it uses a dash mounted camera to track the driver's eye and facial movement and head positioning to not only track drowsiness and microsleeps but also to ensure they remain focused on driving and aren't distracted during operation.

It uses in cabin mitigation techniques"such as an audio alert and seat vibration, which would wake the dead," they told Australian Mining.

Unlike many other fatigue monitoring systems in the market, the DSS system is 'untethered', which means drivers do not have to wear measuring caps or glasses that are plugged in to an in-cabin system.

The system also reached a milestone last month with contractor Toll Mining Services, which installed the 100th system into their fleet.

Toll first trialled it at Anglo American's German Creek coal mine in July 2011, where Toll says it was able to quickly reduce the number of distraction events by 70 per cent on site.

Following this it then rolled out thesystem amongst its other fleets in Queensland's north west, the Pilbara and increased its presence in central Queensland.


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