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Employee Safety Monitoring in the UK—Leadership

Blackline Safety Leader in Connected Gas Detection & Lone Worker Safety June 15, 2015

A component of modern safety practices is the periodic confirmation of employee well being, often through a manual check-in process. Work-alone legislation is at the top of the regulation compliance list in the UK. And for good reason—it is a capable safety program that can make a difference when protection-based efforts have failed. While manual check-in processes have promise, the reality is they fail to offer the responsiveness that every organization desires and may not be enough to make a difference.


Yorkshire Water Team PhotoThe UK is by far the most advanced region when it comes to lone worker safety legislation. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) states “... procedures must be put in place to monitor lone workers as effective means of communication are essential.” They indicate that solutions may include supervisors periodically visiting and observing people working alone, pre-agreed intervals of regular contact between the lone worker and supervisor, using phones, radios or email, or manually operated or automatic warning devices that trigger an alert when necessary.

The United Kingdom has progressed the topic of lone worker monitoring by creating a standard for electronic monitoring of personnel using a person-worn device or smartphone application. British Standard BS 8484 outlines the requirements of such a solution, combined with an alarm receiving center (ARC). Blackline has recently released its first safety monitoring solution designed to exceed the requirements of BS 8484, our Loner Duo, a wearable that enhances the Loner Mobile safety monitoring app.

The United Kingdom Demonstrates What’s Possible

Of all the Western nations, the low rate of worker fatalities in the United Kingdom shows that a focus on safety can make a major difference. For comparison purposes, worker death statistics are often represented as a number per 100,000 workers. The United Kingdom has the lowest rate of 0.51 worker fatalities per 100,000 while the United States is 3.4. Canada is even further behind at 6.1—nearly 12x the rate as that in the United Kingdom. Speaking of such statistics does little to console those touched by these real-life tragedies. It’s through action that safety leaders will be able to manage important changes.

Empowering Your Teams—The Importance Of Lone Worker Safety Monitoring Solutions

Lone workers are considered employees who work by themselves indoors, outdoors, while driving or in remote locations and are among the most vulnerable members of your team. But remember, lone workers aren’t just those who drive to a site on their own or work at a remote power plant—they can be located within large work environments out of sight and sound from others.

For some organizations, compliance to legislation may be a top motivator, but this legislation exists with the goal of making a real difference. Some organizations fail to bring safety to the forefront, resulting in fatalities, injuries, a drop in workforce morale, disrupted company operations, impact the bottom line and possibly lead to legal implications like fines and even jail time. Now is the time to ensure your organization isn’t lagging behind—it’s time to put safety and your employees first.

Whether your industry covers natural resources, construction, transportation or manufacturing, are you doing everything in your power to keep your teams safe?

History has shown that, for many companies, it takes many minutes to hours, and, on some occasions, even days to deliver help to an employee in need. Would your workforce believe this is a reasonable response program in our age of connectedness? Today, turnkey safety monitoring technology can dramatically improve emergency response time with real-time safety alerting and precise employee location reporting. In fact, these connected solutions can provide real-time awareness of an incident, empowering your organization to trigger the fastest possible response. Obviously prevention is the initial goal, but when prevention fails, to make a difference, what’s faster than a real-time emergency response?

Best of all, safety monitoring technology can discover incidents automatically, keep false alarms to an absolute minimum and operate in a distraction-free manner. Employees can be monitored anywhere and everywhere, regardless of their location. Whether indoors, outdoors, while driving or in remote locations, there is a solution for your teams.

What’s Next

I am delighted to share with you that I will be presenting Blackline’s range of products and solutions at the upcoming Safety & Health Expo at the ExCel in London from June 16-18 at stand SHE M2060.

For more information contact me at gboorman@blacklinegps.com.

Stay tuned as we explore how Blackline’s solutions are being used in the UK, the second post of three in this series, coming soon. Subscribe using the form on the right so you never miss a post!

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