On Monday 12th December, 2016, The Caribbean Industrial Research Institute (CARIRI) launched its newest service, Slip Resistance Assessment, to a full house at the Centre for Enterprise Development, Innovation Avenue, Freeport.
The occurrence of Slips, Trips and Falls within recent times in commercial spaces has grown rapidly and in speaking with persons in the construction sector, a common point of contention has always been the coefficient of friction, which is the measure of slip resistance of a tile. Almost every building, commercial or otherwise in the country has some percentage of its space covered by tiles. This is a service that is needed in Trinidad and Tobago, and by extension the region, since it will provide users of commercial spaces with a measure of comfort over the safety of walkways and floors.
The Slip Resistance Assessment will ensure that Slips, Trips and Falls are minimized and that employers, employees, customers and the general public feel safe in the knowledge that these walkways and floors are ‘slip resistant’. In addition to this, it could also help to reduce the cost of the company in the long run by ensuring that tiles that are in place are able to withstand the wear and tear of high levels of use as well as mitigate the company’s risk for lawsuits due to Slips, Trips and Falls.
To assess a floor's slip resistance, CARIRI now has a reliable, thoroughly researched floor friction test method and the equipment necessary to conduct the assessment. CARIRI is mandated to provide value to the people of Trinidad and Tobago and by offering this new service, the Institute aims to ensure that they provide professional advice and testing that will go a long way in keeping the walkways and floors of commercial spaces as safe as possible. As Ms Lisa Ramoutar, Unit Leader of the Industrial Materials Unit – Civil stated in her presentation “One of the biggest aspects of Walkway Safety is the Slips, Trips and Falls. We want to minimize these.”
It is with this objective in mind that the Industrial Materials Unit - Civil sought out the experts in this field and invited them to come to Trinidad to assist the staff at the Institute with training so that they would be better equipped to serve the market.
The Substratum Group has been in existence for decades and has been able to establish itself as a leader in providing safer walkways and floors. They have extensive background in the development and execution of floor care solutions for all facility types and they do use a standards-based approach to walkway safety and this was able to tie in nicely with CARIRI’s commitment to providing the best service to its clients.
Mr David Collette, Managing Director of the Substratum Group personally came to Trinidad to conduct the training, and at the session, he endorsed the quality of the skills that the team at CARIRI now possesses in the area of Slip Resistance Assessment. He was able to bring to light the importance of quality design, procurement and even maintenance in ensuring that Slips, Trips and Falls occur even less or not at all.
The session was well received by a varied cross section of persons which included personnel from the banks, schools, regional corporations, groceries, government ministries, construction companies, architects, etc.
CARIRI is now well established after having a number of staff trained in the area of Slip Resistance Assessment and are pleased and proud to be able to launch this service. It is hoped that by providing this service they would be able to reduce risk and provide employers, employees and the general public with the confidence that they can freely conduct their day-to-day business without fear of Slips, Trips and Falls.
Slip Resistance Assessment falls under the area of Quality and this is something that CARIRI takes very seriously. Achieving quality standards is one of the most important issues in the
construction industry and the management of quality is an important factor in determining the competitive edge of any business. Quality is built in to every aspect of this new service and it is vital that companies recognize the importance of a proper quality system since it begins with selection, sampling and storage of materials used in the construction of walkways and floors.
As a certified and accredited testing facility, it is vital that CARIRI take the lead in bringing these key quality issues to the forefront. With over 30 years of experience, the Civil Engineering Unit is the most advanced ISO-certified civil/construction engineering testing laboratory in the Caribbean. CARIRI’s team of experienced professionals has provided testing and consultancy services to government ministries locally and within the region and to the construction, energy and light manufacturing sectors, among others.
Ms Lisa Ramoutar, Unit Leader of CARIRI’s Industrial Materials Unit – Civil in the midst of her presentation
Mr David Collette, Managing Director of the Substratum Group who came to Trinidad specifically for the launch of CARIRI’s Slip Resistance Assessment
Port of Spain – December 7, 2016: Dispelling notions of male domination in the field, five mobile app developers – two each from Jamaica and Trinidad & Tobago and the other from Montserrat – took all the top prizes at the PitchIT Caribbean Challenge tech entrepreneurship competition recently concluded in Trinidad & Tobago.
Winning entries The Interview JM and QuickPlate of Jamaica, D Carnival Scene and SKED of Trinidad, and IndeTours of Montserrat were selected after two rigorous days of pitching to two panels of judges and an audience of regional and global investors. Each the top five teams will receive US$5000 in seed funding to develop their businesses. They have also been awarded spots in PitchIT Caribbean business accelerators across the region.
In announcing the winners, Chief Judge Rodney Browne from St. Kitts & Nevis and eCaribbean Ltd., said the five were the most impressive of the ten finalists who made presentations to the panel of judges earlier in the day. In accord with Mr. Brown was Canadian High Commissioner to Trinidad & Tobago, Carla Hogen Rufelds, who said she was “impressed by the success of the project, which only serves to enrich the longstanding relationship between Canada and the Caribbean region.” She was also pleased by the camaraderie displayed between the contestants and how well they supported each other throughout the challenge.
A total of 25 tech entrepreneurs from ten countries across the Caribbean (up from last year’s seven) participated in the competition, the aim of which is to identify and enhance the region’s top mobile app development talent.
Finalists by country comprised: TickeTing from Antigua & Barbuda; Rivver, Fix Device, and Data-Bus from Barbados; Buzzshop from Dominica; Click-n-Learn from Guyana; Tikkiz, Driving Change, Shopmobi, and Atendify from Jamaica; Teacher’s Pet and Lim’n Spoon from St. Lucia; Oversea from St. Vincent & the Grenadines; Atete from Suriname; and Optimo Cloud, GoSweat, upShopr, Tech4Agri, EveDrop and The Billionaires League from Trinidad & Tobago.
PitchIT Caribbean is a programme aimed at enhancing the mobile app development ecosystem across CARICOM. It is designed to accelerate mobile app entrepreneurs through the start-up life cycle, which runs from ideation to pitch, from pitch to market and from market to maturity.
It currently supports 4 hubs, one each in Barbados, Dominica, St. Kitts and Nevis, and Trinidad & Tobago. PitchIT Caribbean is the central operation of the Caribbean Mobile Innovation Project, which is part of the Entrepreneurship Programme for Innovation in the Caribbean (EPIC), an initiative funded by the Government of Canada and executed by infoDev/World Bank Group, through a three-party Caribbean consortium, led by UWI Consulting Inc., working along with Mona School of Business and Management, and Mona Business Support Services.
More on PitchIT Caribbean Challenge: https://www.facebook.com/PitchITCaribbean/
Caribbean Mobile Innovation Project/PitchIT Caribbean
TOP 5 MOBILE TECH ENTREPRENEURS, ALL WOMEN!
Winning teams from the PitchIT Caribbean Challenge competition show off their US$5,000 prizes for finishing in the top five following two days of competition in Port of Spain, Trinidad from December 2-3, 2016.
From left: Danielle Tait of The Interview JM from Jamaica, Kelly-Ann Bethel of SKED from Trinidad & Tobago; Ayana St. Louis of D Carnival Scene from Trinidad & Tobago; Karlene Francis, World Bank’s Programme Officer of the Entrepreneurship Programme for Innovation in the Caribbean (EPIC); Nerissa Greenway representing IndeTours from Montserrat and Monique Powell of QuickPlate, Jamaica.
Over the weekend, 25 tech teams from seven countries across the Caribbean showcased their mobile app business ideas in front of a panel of regional and international investors. They also will have guaranteed spots in PitchIT Caribbean business accelerators across the region.
PITCHIT CARIBBEAN FINALISTS STRIKE A POSE
Twenty-five tech teams from seven countries across the Caribbean showcased their mobile app business ideas in front of a panel of regional and international investors in Port of Spain, Trinidad from December 2-3, 2016. Third from left (front) is Karlene Francis, the World Bank’s Programme Officer for the Entrepreneurship Programme for Innovation in the Caribbean (EPIC); at centre (front) is Canadian High Commissioner to Trinidad & Tobago, Carla Hogen Rufelds.