Despite its presence in our lives for well over a century, electricity remains a hazardous technology. It has become a critical component to modern living and commercial operations, but it still poses multiple dangers to life and property. Of course, electrical equipment and designs have been improved over the decades to reduce fire risks – the NFPA reports that the total number of industrial and manufacturing structure fires dropped by 65% between 1980 and 2015. And annual office property structure fires dropped 71% between 1980 and 2011. But, still, more can be done to address the fire risks electrical systems pose to commercial and industrial facilities.
One of the newest advances in the fight to reduce fire risks is bringing internet of things (IoT) technology into commercial and industrial environments. Schneider Electric is pioneering with its growing range of sensors that can provide data and insights that enable facilities personnel to be aware of such conditions earlier and act before loss of property or lives occurs. By pairing a range of equipment sensors with cloud-based analytics, companies can even gain advance warning that on-the-ground conditions could be trending toward a dangerous situation.
Eventually, these technologies can benefit the insurance and testing, inspection, and certification (TIC) companies working with facility owners in their risk-management and loss-prevention roles. In fact, they could offer such service providers valuable new business opportunities that take advantage of our increasingly digitized world.