To keep some lone workers safe, it’s all about making sure they’re in the right place at the right time. For others, however, it’s about ensuring that they don’t spend too much time in certain places. There may be restrictions on lone workers operating in areas containing potentially hazardous materials. They may need to wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), or follow specific elements of health and safety procedures. Similarly, for companies with extensive premises, lone workers need to know information about operating in certain areas. And managers need to be aware when their staff are in restricted areas, or that they are meeting health and safety requirements. We’ve addressed these particular challenges by developing a patented solution, our Safe Beacon feature.
iBeacon technology keeps hazards to a minimum
The power behind the Safe Beacon feature is our proprietary iBeacon Virtual Perimeter technology. For our customers deploying this feature, we fit a set of Bluetooth-enabled iBeacons on their premises that together form a virtual boundary. Beacons can be placed discreetly within buildings or structures, or particular areas of a building where potential hazards may be concentrated. If a lone worker enters this section of the premises, the iBeacons pick up on a signal from their smartphone app or dedicated device (including, most importantly, our intrinsically safe devices). This, in turn, triggers a pre-set warning and alert, which is delivered both to the worker and their line manager.
Deliver the Safe Beacon message you want your workers to hear
The messages which are delivered in an area protected by Safe Beacon are completely customisable. They can communicate proactive safety warnings or dynamic risk notifications, such as exposure to an area being time-limited. They can ensure that workers understand and acknowledge Health and Safety policies and procedures. These may indicate that specific PPE is worn, or that certain procedures regarding hazardous materials must be followed.
In sectors such as Manufacturing & Construction, or Utilities & Engineering, these virtual barriers can be invaluable. In the UK, the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) legislation covers many materials used in these sectors. There are also separate regulations covering asbestos. Under COSHH regulations, employers need to prevent or reduce their workers' exposure to substances that are hazardous to their health. The list of substances covered includes chemicals and products containing chemicals; fumes, dusts, vapours and mists; and gases. Operating a virtual barrier provides protection for lone workers, making them aware of the presence of regulated substances and ways to mitigate associated risks.
If workers do get into trouble, Safe Hub ensures that help is on its way
Safe Beacon communicates alerts between the Safe Hub management platform and a worker’s device, so it’s a two-way process. That means that, using Safe Beacon, lone workers can alert Safe Hub if they get into difficulty within high-risk or restricted areas. The staff at our Alarm Receiving Centre will follow the dedicated escalation protocols attached to the lone worker in question. The individual can then be quickly located, and immediately provided with the appropriate emergency help. And this means that all lone workers can be in the right place at the right time after all.
Contact Lone Worker Solutions and the Safe Hub team today
Post by Charles Stark
Charles is Account Executive at Lone Worker Solutions (LWS). He introduces new clients to Safe Hub, our award-winning system to protect and monitor lone workers.