4 Ways Computer Vision and AI is Revolutionizing Workplace Safety

Team Voxel

April 24, 2024

Computer vision is a field of AI that identifies and classifies objects. It's changing how safety leaders identify risks, analyze root causes, improve employee training, and increase efficiency.

Nothing is more important in the workplace than employee safety. So it’s exciting to have new tools like artificial intelligence (AI) available to help make sure that employees, colleagues, and friends are as safe as possible. In this post, you’ll learn about four areas in which AI and computer vision have a huge impact on workplace safety.

  1. Proactive hazard detection 
  2. Root cause analysis for risk assessment 
  3. Enhancing compliance and training 
  4. Operational efficiency in safety management

1. Proactive hazard detection

Computer vision is a field of AI that identifies and classifies objects. Within workplace safety, it’s revolutionized how safety professionals identify hazards by moving from passive surveillance to active prevention. 

Traditional security and safety cameras record footage, but that’s all they do. In the vast majority of workplaces, that footage sits in a hard drive unwatched unless there is an incident. This kind of passive surveillance limits the lessons that can be learned when an incident happens and makes it impossible to prevent the incident in the first place. Sure, we can see how it happened. Maybe product was stacked too high, a vehicle was parked in the wrong area, or an employee forgot his or her PPE. But what if we could have been alerted of the hazard? What if we could have prevented the incident all together?

With the help of AI in workplace safety, we can prevent these kinds of incidents before they occur. Voxel’s site intelligence platform integrates it’s computer vision and AI into existing cameras to detect unsafe behaviors and risks around the clock. It uses pattern recognition and machine learning algorithms to identify and notify safety leaders of dangerous behaviors and conditions, like poor ergonomics, PPE compliance, forklift near misses, spills, and more. Detecting these risks in real-time can also help shape safety practices to minimize risks in the future. 

2. Root cause analysis for risk assessment

The power of AI in analyzing vast amounts of data for risk assessment cannot be overstated. These systems process and analyze footage from workplace security cameras to identify trends and predict potential areas of risk. In Voxel’s case, computer vision is the eye for a site intelligence platform which aggregates data and creates detailed analytics in real time. 

A chart regarding ergonomic practices

These analytics include the identification of leading indicators for risk, hazard spikes at different times and locations, and site safety scores. In the blink of AI (so sorry, couldn’t help ourselves), safety managers and site supervisors have up to date reports and flagged footage of violations, anomalies, and near-misses. 

With this easily digestible dashboard of data, everyone from safety execs to safety managers to site supervisors can use these insights to update training programs and make facility improvements, equipment purchases, and other targeted preventive actions.

Decisions based on this data save employees from injury or worse, and save companies millions of dollars. According to the Economic Policy Institute, 23,000 on-the-job injuries happen every day, costing an incalculable human toll and calculable economic toll of $192 billion per year.

Americold, a Fortune 500 cold storage provider, saw a tremendous impact over the course of just one year. By implementing the data they collected with Voxel, they experienced a 77% reduction in injuries and saved $1.1million over the course of a year. You can read more about that in our case study. But needless to say, using AI in workplace safety can yield substantial results over time.

3. Enhancing compliance and training

AI in workplace safety plays a massive role in improving compliance and training. The data gathered from cameras with computer vision can be used to train employees on safer behaviors in a variety of ways. 

The National Safety Council (NSC) recently released a report indicating that companies implementing AI-driven training programs have witnessed a significant improvement in safety compliance rates. Discussing the report, Emily Whitcomb, NSC’s Director of Innovation, said “EHS professionals already manage large volumes of data on a daily basis, and advancements in analytics and artificial intelligence have made it easier to synthesize this information to improve existing risk mitigation activities.”

With easily digestible dashboards of safety information in their hands, safety managers can use the analytics to quickly identify a risk and then immediately coach employees on safety practices. For example, if a supervisor reviews their dashboard and sees employees have a tendency to lift boxes in an unsafe way, that supervisor can take a few minutes during the pre-shift meeting to share lifting tips and tricks to the team. They can even incentivize safer behavior by gamifying the reduction of incidents by different teams or shifts. 

The data that computer vision and AI gathers isn’t just useful for compliance spot checking, health and safety teams can use them to write entirely new training programs. With all the data provided by integrating AI in workplace safety programs, tailoring safety programs to address specific workplace challenges is simpler than it’s ever been. 

4. Operational efficiency in safety management

The operational efficiency brought about by AI in workplace safety management is marked by a significant reduction in manual workload and enhanced focus on strategic safety planning. With computer vision to automate routine monitoring, safety managers are freed up to concentrate on high-value strategic initiatives and urgent responses. 

The labor hours involved in reviewing and analyzing the data that AI collects would be prohibitive. Safety and security cameras gather data during every moment of business. Let’s say you run a warehouse that is operating 12 hours per day, five days a week. Let’s also say you have five cameras (a low estimate) in areas you want to analyze in order to improve safety. That’s 300 hours of footage to review, not to mention the time it would take to analyze it and isolate relevant incidents and near misses. With a system like Voxel that uses AI and computer vision to analyze the data, your company would spend significantly fewer labor hours on data gathering. 

This change is happening right now at the Port of Virginia. Andy Copley, the Assistant Manager of Health and Safety used to spend 2-3 hours a day sifting through footage. After using Voxel to identify unsafe behaviors throughout the nearly 800 acre site (which operates 24/7), Andy now reviews footage for 20-30 minutes. Now, he can spend more time on the field at various sites rather than at his desk. Every day, computer vision and AI not only improves safety outcomes, but it also optimizes resource allocation.


The integration of computer vision and AI in workplace safety is creating a new era of efficiency, proactivity, and intelligence in managing workplace hazards. By harnessing the capabilities of AI for hazard detection, risk assessment, incident response, compliance enhancement, and operational efficiency, businesses can significantly mitigate risks and foster a culture of safety.

How Voxel can help

Voxel’s site intelligence platform connects directly to your existing security cameras and then uses computer vision and AI to give you more visibility and insight into the safety of every site, every day. You’ll have the data you need to take impactful, preventative action that keeps employees safe and strengthens your safety culture. 


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