V-SAFE Deploys Infrared Industries Gas Analyzers in Ethiopian Emissions Testing

Hayward, CA – September 16, 2011 – Infrared Industries worked with non-profit organization V-SAFE (Vehicular Smogless Air for Ethiopia) to provide FGA4000XDS and HM5000 gas analyzers, which were used to conduct ground-breaking emissions testing in the capital city of Addis Ababa in Ethiopia.

Ethiopian native and now U.S. citizen Derebew Shankute—one of the founders of V-SAFE—took his family to visit Ethiopia in 2003. When they exited the airport, they immediately had trouble breathing. He noticed big plumes of smoke coming from every vehicle and that children playing soccer had trouble breathing. He knew something had to be done and felt like it was a personal calling for him to be the one to do it.

When he returned to the U.S., Derebew partnered with Bob Benjaminson and Garrett Torgerson to form V-SAFE. The three are experienced environmental, mechanical, and chemical engineers and have raised or donated the money and their time to the project. They worked with the Ethiopian government to get permission to go there and do emissions testing.

They took six FGA4000XDS gas analyzers and four HM50000 handheld gas analyzers from Infrared Industries to do the testing. V-SAFE trained 15 automotive technicians to do roadside emissions testing and 15 environmental engineers to test the ambient air. Three local television crews followed them all over Addis Ababa for eight hours to document and broadcast the testing.

“The Infrared Industries analyzers arrived, we turned them on, and they worked,” said Bob Benjaminson, President of V-SAFE. “The software in the analyzers was like no software I’ve used before—there were no errors—and the analyzers are very stable and nothing ever went wrong with them.”
The high level of pollutants found in the air in Addis Ababa can lead to severe illnesses and may be contributing to the short life expectancy in Ethiopia of only 56 years for men and 60 years for women. Currently, no African country except for South Africa has any emissions standards. It is the hope of V-SAFE founders that they can facilitate a process to create standards in Ethiopia by initially raising awareness of the problems. They are currently compiling the results of the tests, writing a report, and making recommendations, which they will pass on to the government of Ethiopia. They also will formally provide a report of their findings to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the World Health Organization, and other interested organizations.

Benjaminson says they chose Infrared Industries to partner with because their willingness to cooperate with V-SAFE was superb. “We just wanted to do this to help out V-SAFE and the Ethiopian people because it seemed like a worthwhile endeavor. We felt like our gas analyzers could be used to make a difference in the lives of the people there,” said Mark Russell, CEO of Infrared Industries.

About Infrared Industries, Inc.
Infrared Industries, Inc. is a leading developer and producer of state-of-the-art gas analyzer instrumentation to assist in process control, regulatory compliance, pollution control and many types of research including alternative fuel and petrochemical development. Founded in 1959, the company is widely respected and recognized in the automotive, oil and gas, industrial, environmental, analytic and research, and utility industries for its rugged, reliable, accurate, and affordable analyzers. Infrared Industries’ years of experience in these markets is reflected in its wide array of gas analyzer products for original equipment manufacturers (OEM) and customer applications.

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