ROCHESTER, NY (WROC) — As talk about reopening the area continues, there is growing concern about identifying people that may have COVID-19 symptoms and one company in Rochester is using a new thermal imaging technology that can tell if someone has a high temperature, through just a camera.
Hawkeye Protection, a local security company, is thinking about how its technology can be used to keep business and customers safe, as well look to reopen post coronavirus.
“As we start to come back, companies are putting people by the doors and there physically scanning everybody, everyone who walks in is getting their manual temperature taken that doesn’t really fit in with the social distancing we’ve been learning,” Greg Bellamy said, owner Hawkeye Protection.
The company has developed thermal imaging cameras that can detect a common COVID-19 symptom — fever.
As soon as someone steps in front of its cameras, it will start a scan, gathering some basic health data. A box appears around the person’s image with their temperature, and turns red if it is too high. The cameras can even be set to identify if someone is not wearing a mask, and send out an alert.
“It’s not intrusive, it doesn’t need any personal information. It’s not doing more than your regular standard camera, it’s just taking your temperature and that’s just ensuring to the business owner and everyone whose already in the business,” Bellamy said.
Thermal imaging is not a new technology, according to CBS, companies like Flexible Systems, thermal guardian, CrowdRX have manufactured similar cameras for use in airports and health care centers.
Bellamy says Hawkeye’s cameras are low cost and can integrate easily with any location
he said this could become the new normal for companies looking to get back to work and prevent any infections.
“So if you have an event or a work situation where you want to have a lot of people together, those people can all be screened, so you know with a relative sense of security that people inside don’t have a fever walking in and if they do have a fever they’re going to be sent for secondary screening,” Bellamy said.
The technology won’t detect the coronavirus, but can be used as a tool to prevent any potential spread.