Celia McGrath and Hal Montes, Storepersons, Facilities and Building Services, with the HALO-equipped warehouse forklift.

Over the past few months, our SHCS Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) team, under the leadership of Gontran Paget, worked with staff and leaders in two SHCS departments on a pilot project to source, purchase and install an innovative lighting system on several workplace vehicles, in an effort to decrease the risk of pedestrian collisions.

Green forklift in a warehouse surrounded by a horseshoe of red HALO light

The HALO system

HALO is a unique LED lighting system created by FHOSS Illuminated Safety in the UK. Once installed, HALO lights shine a brightly-coloured line around a vehicle, creating a clearly-identified “exclusion zone” that workers, pedestrians or other drivers can easily see. The system has been used widely in the UK for several years and data from industry indicates it is a valuable and effective method for preventing incidents.

Why we’re piloting HALO

Our OHS team learned about the HALO lighting system from colleagues in the mining industry and immediately saw its potential for use at UBC—to increase the visibility of our SHCS service vehicles and help prevent incidents with workers, pedestrians, cyclists and the increasing number of electric bicycle, skateboard and scooter riders.

Piloting the HALO system on several key SHCS vehicles is part of our broader efforts to enhance and maintain a culture of proactive safety in SHCS.

Detail of forklift rear wheel and concrete floor with red HALO line

“SHCS is fortunate to have highly-skilled driving professionals who safely navigate the campus every day. HALO is one additional means for us to reduce the risk of an incident and provide our staff with the tools and resources they need to accomplish their work in the safest way possible.” — Gontran Paget, Manager, Occupational Health and Safety, SHCS

Where we’re using HALO

Our Facilities and Building Services team was quick to see the benefits of HALO, which was installed on a forklift used at the Thunderbird residence warehouse and will soon be installed on a Club Car utility vehicle used at Acadia Park student family residence.

The Parking team will also be installing a HALO kit on their Bobcat Toolcat utility vehicle, which is used for snow removal in our parking lots and parkades.

Close up on red HALO sidelight, attached to a black forklift roll cage.
Close up on red HALO rear light and brake lights, attached to a black forklift roll cage.

Success and plans for expansion

Staff report that the system is brighter and works better than anticipated. Based on this initial success, the SHCS Occupational Health and Safety team is collaborating with staff across SHCS to identify other candidate vehicles for the HALO system.

Notably, the team is currently investigating if the system could also be used on vehicles that operate on public streets, such as delivery or maintenance vehicles, which would have an even greater impact on campus safety, especially during the winter months when limited daylight hours and heavy rain contribute to reduced visibility.

HALO quick facts

  • The system for one vehicle costs roughly $550 CDN.
  • Lights are hardwired into the vehicle and draw little power.
  • Each light has a lifespan of 50,000+ hours.
  • Lights are waterproof.
  • While they are most visible at night, they also work well during the day in low light or overcast conditions and interior spaces with artificial lighting.

Are there other useful applications for this technology?

FHOSS, the company behind the HALO lighting system, offers several other applications which are also of interest to our OHS team, including illuminated safety walkways and cycle lane warning systems.

Our commitment to safety

Our workplace safety record in SHCS is strong, and we are committed to developing a robust culture of proactive safety, to maintain and enhance safety on campus for our students, faculty, staff and the entire campus community—a commitment that benefits the health and wellbeing of everyone at UBC.

Your SHCS safety team

The SHCS Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) team, which also reports in to UBC Safety and Risk Services (SRS) supports all SHCS departments in the identification, mitigation and management of a broad range of risks.

Meet the team:

  • Gontran Paget, Manager
  • Joanne Thember, Safety Associate
  • Kate Allan, Safety Associate
  • Jessica Sterman, Compliance and Claims System Associate
  • Marena Sra, Safety and Claims Coordinator