The coronavirus outbreak has made monitoring worker health another new normal and many companies are conducting temperature checks when workers arrive as a first line of defense against fighting the spread of infection.
Unfortunately, manually administering temperature checks can be cumbersome, inefficient and invasive, especially if you have a large number of employees.
Luckily, with new, innovative technology, you don’t have to handle all temperature checks manually. Thermal cameras detect elevated temperatures and send alerts to you and anyone else within the company in real time. Using state-of-the-art monitoring, these cameras can actively determine if temperatures are elevated from a safe distance.
While not a medical device or a means to diagnose, prevent, or treat anything, thermal cameras are intended to detect elevated body temperature, trigger an alert, and then you can advise the employee to have their temperature checked using an Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved medical device and consult a physician regarding their health.
Are you interested in learning how thermal temperature cameras can help your business operate safely? In this article, we’ll dive into what thermal temperature cameras are, how they work, and how businesses can benefit by installing them!
What Are Thermal Temperature Cameras?
You expect to see security cameras when you enter most businesses. Cameras, whether recording or on a live-feed, have become so commonplace and are just about everywhere you look.
Thermal temperature cameras work like other security cameras, but the camera shows a heat map of everything appearing in view, instead of producing a clear image. While you won’t see image details like facial features, you’ll be able to identify hot and cold points on the recorded video while the camera registers people and records their individual temperatures.
You’ve probably seen a movie or two where they “use” thermal technology to locate someone. Real life thermal imaging cameras have been used by the military for years and is now playing a critical role during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Understanding How a Thermal Temperature Camera Works
Modern thermal temperature cameras are highly accurate. In fact, with the right conditions, cameras can consistently report elevated skin temperatures when compared to measurements taken with a traditional thermometer.
Unlike an off-the-shelf camera you might pick up from a local big box store, thermal temperature cameras are made up of unique components. Not only does the camera need to monitor and record images, but it needs to record temperatures and compare them to predefined thresholds and the ambient room temperature.
The Four Main Components of Thermal Temperature Cameras
- Camera. The lens device used to monitor and capture images of human traffic. Thermal cameras produce an image that is a visual representation of the different temperatures. The system has one camera for real-time image capture and a second camera for temperature monitoring.
- Thermal calibration unit. This device maintains a specific temperature and does not reflect any energy from its surroundings. Using this device, the thermal temperature camera can maintain a constant point of reference when scanning and measuring temperatures.
- Recording system. The recording system is responsible for storing both visual and thermal imaging information. Depending on the type of system, you can capture temperature measurement data, perform searches based on temperature, time or person. Additionally, the recording system may be able to provide notifications when it captures footage of an above-threshold temperature at a specific location and time.
- Local display device. This monitor allows you to watch temperature recordings as the camera captures them in real-time. Alongside the monitor, many systems come equipped with a bell or alarm and will send an alert to specific parties if the camera senses a temperature above the monitored threshold.
Benefits of Thermal Temperature Cameras
Thermal temperature cameras contain many features that have added benefits for your business, besides knowing everyone’s temperature who walks through your door. While the coronavirus outbreak has triggered many businesses to look into thermal temperature cameras, they have many long-term benefits for businesses even after the pandemic is over.
Efficiency and Accuracy
As we mentioned earlier, taking everyone’s temperature as they walk into the building may not be practical or efficient. For a small 5 or 6 person business, it’s a minor inconvenience but for a large factory or entertainment venue, it could drastically impact operations. Thermal temperature cameras can help reduce this impact by:
- Detecting elevated temperatures for everyone that walks within the specific range of the camera, without having to stop for a temperature check.
- Offering temperature checks while social distancing, without close person-to-person interaction.
- Running on an automated system that reduces human error when properly installed and calibrated.
Think of it this way. If you are performing pre-screening manually when workers or visitors come through the door, you will need to increase the number of people performing temperature screening which can reduce the level of consistency and put screeners at risk. In the same vein, most hand-held thermometers readings must be written down or transcribed into a computer system manually causing more room for error.
Monitoring temperatures is the first step towards identifying if someone could be ill and possibly infectious. Like the coronavirus, other viruses like the flu elevate temperatures and can significantly impact your workforce if they quickly spread. Monitoring temperatures can help prevent the spread of infection from disrupting your business and, more importantly, will keep your workers happy and healthy.
Again, the intention of a thermal temperature camera is to determine if individuals need further evaluation due to elevated body temperature not to diagnose, treat, or cure conditions.
High-temperature alerts can signal more than just a fever. They can be a sign of overheating equipment, broken HVAC system, and fires. While capable of monitoring fevers, they’ll also pick up warning signs for high-temperature disasters. Real-time temperature monitoring and alerting can help save employee lives and your business, as the monitor can pick up on drastic temperature changes before a smoke alarm registers smoke.
Peace of Mind
Thermal temperature cameras give your employees, customers, and visitors the peace of mind that they’re entering an environment that takes safety advice seriously. With a wide array of applications, thermal temperature cameras are beneficial for offices, retailers, restaurants, manufactures, educational facilities, event venues, financial institutions, healthcare facilities, and more.
Learn More About Thermal Temperature Cameras
We know that there is a lot to be concerned with, and that’s why we strive to deliver a positive experience and peace of mind through our security solutions and services.
If you’re looking for more in-depth technical details about thermal temperature cameras or want to know how the installation process works, Watchmen Security is happy to help. We provide commercial security solutions in the Kansas City metro area.
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