Posted: January 2009
BAA, formerly the world’s leading airport company operating 7 airports in the UK as well as a number of international airports, dealt with the running of all areas of airport life including security and retail. With approximately 1,700 flights taking off from UK airports everyday, the volume of passengers, staff and traffic continues to be phenomenal.
BAA had a large fleet of electric vehicles used to transport passengers, luggage and manoeuvre trolleys around the airport. The nature of the vehicles meant that they moved around pedestrian areas and could potentially collide with an object or person. To prevent this threat, tonal reversing alarms were previously fitted to electric vehicles. In the noisy environment of the airport, with various tannoy announcements, voices and general hustle & bustle, the beeping of a reversing vehicle was becoming lost in the background noise. It was also difficult to establish which vehicle was moving and in which direction.
BAA were also receiving complaints from staff that were having trouble hearing customers over the blaring constant tone alarms and drivers were becoming frustrated with the annoying shrill beeping.
bbs-tek® alarms, pioneered by and unique to Brigade Electronics, are a safer and more effective alternative to the irritating traditional tonal reversing vehicle alarm. The complex, broad band frequency of a bbs-tek® alarm emits a “ssh ssh” sound, which can only be heard in the danger zone and dissipates rapidly. This concentrated sound, or White Sound®, is both directional and easily located, making it safer for pedestrians to move to safety, unlike traditional alarms that can cause confusion as to which vehicle is reversing and in which direction. This is especially important in a busy airport environment where people are trying to concentrate on announcements and looking at screens for flight information, rather than looking for moving vehicles. The directional aspect of bbs-tek® alarms are also invaluable for blind and hard of hearing people, who are able to locate the danger much more easily.
After trialling Brigade’s broad band sound reversing alarms at Stansted Airport, BAA decided to fit the technology to all electric vehicles in Heathrow Airport’s Terminal Four.
BAA’s trolley trailers at Heathrow’s Terminal Four were fitted with BBS-97, ideal for medium duty vehicles and combie’s will be fitted with BBS-92, with a slightly reduced decibel rating for lower ambient noise level situations. The electric vehicles were fitted with front (BBS-87) and rear (BBS-82) White Sound® warning alarms.