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Digital Transformation in Hazardous Industries

Posted by Debra V.

January 03, 2023 in #connectedworker

Driving operational efficiency with safety in mind

As a lead for connected workers, you know how digital transformation can boost operational efficiency. You want every team member to stay connected in real-time wherever they may be located. You also want to improve safety and productivity while using digital tablets. But some locations and operational hindrances make it hard to deploy digital initiatives. This blog will clarify why you should care about safe deployment within hazardous locations.

What is a hazardous location?

While working in Oil & Gas, Energy & Utilities, Manufacturing, Mining, or other similar industries, you must be very careful with your digital transformation plan. Several operational sites are categorized as hazardous under NFPA 70® and the National Electric Code(NEC). These locations have a possibility of fire or explosion because of combustible gasses, fumes, vapors, liquids, dust, or fibers. Articles 500 through 503 of the NFPA 70 NEC cover conditions or requirements for using electronic or electric gadgets. Organizations must follow these rules and classifications for NEC and OSHA compliance.

Any electronic device must be approved to operate in locations defined under different Class and Division or Zone depending on the environments and geographic location; for example, Class I, Divisions 1 and 2; Class II, Divisions 1 and 2; and Class III, Divisions 1 and 2 are for the North American market. Hence, great care must be taken while deploying equipment like work tablets in these hazardous classified locations. Failing to follow the rules can lead to serious legal troubles and heavy fines.


Why do hazardous locations need more attention?

As a lead for the connected workforce, you must be extra careful during digital transformation in hazardous locations. Tablets must be facilitators here and shouldn't become a hindrance. Though you're responsible for connectivity, team safety is also crucial in hazardous locations.  Risks due to flammable elements and combustible dust are high and a serious safety hazard. So, digital transformation is not just about efficiency and productivity.

A proper digitization plan can protect the crew from potential safety hazards. For example, using tablets for continuous safety monitoring. This is when seamless connectivity becomes essential for enhancing efficiency and protecting everyone from accidents. You cannot afford damage to tablets or the exposure from that damage, leading to increased safety risks in hazardous locations.


How aXtion Extreme helps in digital transformation?

Anyone charged with implementing digital initiatives in hazardous locations must consider using hazardous location-certified devices. An aXtion Extreme case, together with a smart device such as a tablet or phone, provides a viable and cost-effective alternative to using Industrial Personal Computer (IPC) solutions. These can protect crew members from safety hazards in the field. These cases are Class I, Div. 2 and Class II, Class III, Div 1. & Div. 2, Groups A – G certified, and ATEX Zone 2 compliant.

Here's why you should consider deploying aXtion Extreme:

  • Built for hazardous (classified) locations

    aXtion Extreme cases are designed for hazardous locations such as aircraft hangers, gasoline stations, bulk storage plants, and paint processing plants, specified in NFPA 70® NEC. The protective case secures the tablet, which is a potential ignition source in a hazardous environment. The completely enclosed protective case minimizes the chances of fire, short circuit or a catastrophic accident while working with an electrical unit like a tablet. 

  • Rugged design for ultimate protection 

    aXtion Extreme rugged cases are MIL-STD-810H drop test and IP68 liquid/particle/dust protection certified. This makes them suitable for deploying electrical units like tablets in hazardous locations without compromising on safety. As the rugged case secures the tablet, digital transformation initiatives are safeguarded while working in hazardous locations within oil and gas, mining, manufacturing and other industries. 

  • Mounting capabilities for hands-free operations

    Mounting features of aXtion Extreme cases help crew members to set up mobile workstations quickly. Crews can operate completely hands-free in any setting, environment or on any equipment without worrying about the tablet. This helps them respond quickly in cases of emergency due to equipment malfunction or any safety risk. Also, mounting helps secure the device in a fixed position, avoiding accidental drops.


Class I and Class II, Div. 2 & Class III
Div. 1 & Div. 2  ATEX Zone 2

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Your digital transformation initiatives, now

Ensuring safety while taking your digital transformation measures is a big task, especially in industries like oil & gas, mining, and manufacturing. The presence of flammable substances makes every electrical device a serious safety risk. 

Securing all electrical units to prevent accidental fires or hazards should be your first priority whenever you think about digital transformation across hazardous locations. Using rugged cases like aXtion Extreme helps aid your digital transformation measures without compromising on safety. 

CLICK HERE to see our latest aXtion Extreme products.

Explore how rugged cases help in digital transformation across hazardous industries like oil and gas now.