News

Laing O’Rourke uses thermal imaging for temperature checks

9 June 2020

Temperature checks using thermal camera technology have been introduced by Laing O’Rourke on its projects and in its offices to manage the risk from Covid-19.

The cameras are situated at workplace access points, installed into purpose-built modular units for sites, or mounted on ceilings in the entrances to offices.

They have already been used on HS2 and Hinkley Point C and in Laing O’Rourke’s manufacturing facility, Explore Industrial Park. They are now being rolled out to other projects including Royal Liverpool Hospital, Brighton 3Ts, Whiteleys, Soho Place and Olympia in the coming weeks.

Workers have to stand in view of a camera for a short period while it measures their skin temperature. A green light will indicate if their temperature is in the normal range, while an alert will sound and a notification will be sent to the system’s administrator if the individual’s temperature is at the upper limit. 

All workers are checked at site access points

If the alert does sound, the worker is asked to rest and undergo a second test. If their temperature reads high for a second time then they are asked to return home, follow the government’s guidelines and apply for a coronavirus test.

Steve Paskins, Laing O’Rourke’s operation leader on its HS2 enabling works joint venture, said: “We have introduced a number of new working practices and have developed a detailed plan to safely continue work based on the requirements of the Construction Leadership Council’s Site Operating Procedures. 

“There is no replacement for good cleanliness and social distancing rigour but we’ve found that the temperature checking units work quickly and accurately, and while the system cannot detect if coronavirus is present, their ability to pick up a fever – one of the main symptoms of Covid-19 – gives us and everyone on site, as well as their families, assurance that colleagues have all been checked before entering the project. The feedback has been good, and the technology is an important element within our armoury.” 

Developed by Select Plant, the thermal screening ‘plug and play’ modular units will also be available for hire to other contractors.