We often talk about lone workers facing a range of risk scenarios. Some of the highest-risk roles involve working in remote areas with intermittent mobile phone signal. Conversely, working with vulnerable people in their own homes puts lone workers at risk of dangerously unpredictable behaviour. But one group of lone workers face immediate threats to their physical safety in their everyday work just from their surroundings. Those operating in hazardous areas such as gaseous environments risk sparks igniting the air around them. This becomes a particular problem when they need to summon help in an emergency. With Safe Hub, employers can keep even these lone workers protected – and in this blog, we’re going to remind you how we do this.
Intrinsically safe devices that can operate in gaseous environments
We have a choice of two intrinsically safe devices – Twig Protector Ex and Twig Protector Pro Ex – which support all our standard Safe Hub safety features without the risk of a spark. Intrinsic safety is a technique designed to limit energy, electrical and thermal outputs in electrical equipment and wiring. This means that there is not sufficient energy to risk creating a spark, but still enough energy to power equipment – in this case, a dedicated lone worker device.
According to international Atmospheres Explosibles (ATEX) standards: ‘Intrinsically safe equipment and wiring shall not be capable of releasing sufficient electrical or thermal energy under normal or abnormal conditions to cause ignition of a flammable or combustible atmospheric mixture in its most easily ignitable concentration.’ Intrinsic safety is therefore lifesaving in hazardous locations, or where hazardous or flammable materials are used. Equipment is certified for intrinsic safety by independent third-party agencies under the supervision of various national and supranational bodies.
Keeping lone workers genuinely safe
Our intrinsically safe devices are ideal for lone workers operating in hazardous areas or extreme conditions. Both devices are certified by independent agencies as featuring ATEX-compliant technology which limits electrical and thermal outputs. Additionally, they’re top-of-the-range mobile phones, deploying GPS/GSM technology, and they provide excellent reception and coverage.
With the full range of Safe Hub features, our intrinsically safe devices cover workers whatever their daily work practice may throw at them. The lone worker can manually press the emergency button in the event of accident or danger, triggering an emergency Red Alert at the Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC). If they’re about to enter a hazardous environment, they can leave a Yellow Alert voice memo at the ARC. The in-built 3D sensors will raise a reactive Worker Down alarm at the ARC after a slip, trip or fall, or sudden loss of consciousness. Using the device’s screen, the user can set intervals for our proactive Safe Check feature, with which they can respond to automated welfare check prompts. And finally, users can access Group Alert broadcast messages and enjoy Safe Beacon virtual barrier protection.
An example risk scenario: mains and service engineers
We like to give examples of real-world risk scenarios to illustrate how Safe Hub works in practice. Let’s take Jane. She’s a mains and service engineer who deals with small fixed-site gas networks such as at caravan sites, where underground pipework supplies individual properties. As part of her safe working practice, Jane must always leave any standard mobile devices in her vehicle when working outside. Without our devices, Jane would, therefore, be at particular risk by being unable to summon support in an emergency.
In contrast, Jane’s employer has deployed our Twig devices, so she has the ARC’s resources at her beck and call. Let’s say she arrives at a caravan park after heavy rain to repair a faulty valve which is disrupting gas supplies. On arriving at the gas pumping station, another vehicle skids into hers. She can trigger a Red Alert to summon emergency help if she’s able to press the button on her device. The ARC uses GPS data to direct emergency services to her precise location, bypassing standard 999 procedures. She’d already left a Yellow Alert voice memo, signalling the ARC that she was about to enter a situation where she might be at risk. And even in the event that Jane can’t actively trigger an alert, Worker Down fall and impact detection generates an automated alert with the ARC.
Gold standard lone worker safety in hazardous environments
For lone workers operating in gaseous environments, Safe Hub can make intrinsically safe devices part of their everyday work practice. Employers can fulfil their duties to safeguard the health and safety of a group of lone workers who are in the highest of risk categories. It’s gold standard lone worker safety that delivers proven results. #IntrinsicallySafeDevices #GaseousEnvironment #TwigProtector #GoldStandard #LoneWorkerSafety
Contact Lone Worker Solutions and the Safe Hub team today for more information about protecting lone workers in gaseous environments with our intrinsically safe devices.
Post by Rob Gilbert
Rob is Chief Sales Officer at Lone Worker Solutions (LWS). He is responsible for introducing new clients to the benefits of Safe Hub, and ensuring their experience is straightforward, simple and truly effective. His consultative, customer-focused approach means our clients have full access to every possible resource to achieve lasting, best-of-breed solutions and service excellence.