Today, ensuring work safety is considered to be one of the top priorities for various industries. Workplace injuries, illnesses, and deaths often entail substantial production and financial losses, governmental checks, series of dismissals, and loss of reputation. Wearable devices are one of the technologies that flourished with the fourth industrial revolution or Industry 4.0, allowing employers to monitor and maintain safety at workplaces. The purpose of this article is to systematize knowledge in the field of industrial wearables’ safety to assess the relevance of their use in enterprises as the technology maintaining occupational safety, to correlate the benefits and costs of their implementation, and, by identifying research gaps, to outline promising directions for future work in this area. We categorize industrial wearable functions into four classes (monitoring, supporting, training, and tracking) and provide a classification of the metrics collected by wearables to better understand the potential role of wearable technology in preserving workplace safety. Furthermore, we discuss key communication technologies and localization techniques utilized in wearable-based work safety solutions. Finally, we analyze the main challenges that need to be addressed to further enable and support the use of wearable devices for industrial work safety.
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