It’s the unpredictable and ever changing nature of mobile work that makes trying to maintain health and safety standards such a constant challenge.
While accident rates have continued to decline over the past decade, there’s absolutely no room for complacency.
The latest HSE (Health and Safety Executive) statistics show that 137 people were killed due to work related activities in 2016/2017.
But this is one area where technology has a crucial role to play in raising standards and minimising the risks faced by our field workers.
Here’s a look at some of the smartphone apps to increase mobile worker safety:
- St John Ambulance First Aid
- Medical ID: ICE
- SOS Panic Alarm
- Icon Torch
St John Ambulance First Aid
This is one of those apps that hopefully will never have to use. But if a mobile worker does face an emergency situation, this could prove to be a life saver.
It provides expert first aid advice on the correct protocols for a wide range of emergency and medical situations. It gives instant advice on the correct actions to take in those crucial first minutes after an accident.
Clear illustrations and audio instructions are used to ensure fast and effective communications. It’s not designed to replace traditional first aid training but as a quick and simple basic aid.
Here's the link to download the St John Ambulance First Aid app.
This provides a range of different ways to help ensure worker safety, including timed sessions, employee check-ins and a panic button. It lets you choose the option which is best suited to your mobile working operation.
The check-in feature triggers a ‘man down’ alert for situations when an employee fails to confirm their safety. The app also uses motion detection to help identify trips, slips or falls.
The panic button includes an option to use the phone’s power button to allow a ‘discreet’ alert to be raised. It can also be synced up to a Bluetooth button to provide protection when the smartphone isn’t accessible.
Here's the link to download the StaySafe app.
Medical ID: ICE
Sometimes the simplest of ideas can be the most effective. This app allows fieldworkers to make all of their medical information instantly accessible via the phone’s lock screen.
This ICE (In Case of Emergency) information can include anything from details of medical allergies and medicines taken to blood types and next-of-kin contacts. It gives first responders and medics all the information they need in a glance.
The app allows these details to be accessed via the lock screen even when a device has been locked or password protected. The paid version of the app unlocks additional features such as SMS alerts and emergency contact calls.
Here's the link to download the Medical ID: ICE app.
SOS Panic Alarm
Mobile workers often have to enter situations where they feel vulnerable. It could be making deliveries to a high crime area or carrying out maintenance tasks in a hazardous environment.
This app provides reassurance that should anything go wrong, an automated alert will be triggered. A timer is set which will send out a message to a predefined group if the user fails to check-in.
With no need for constant location tracking, this requires minimal battery usage and provides a ‘lightweight’ alternative to some of the more fully featured alternatives.
Here's the link to download the SOS Panic Alarm app.
Nighttime or badly lit environments can add an extra layer of risk to any mobile work operation. That’s why having easy access to the flashlight functionality of a phone is so handy.
It’s a feature that all Android phones provide but the option is buried away in the settings. This app provides a simple one-click button to switch a phone’s LED lights on and off.
While there are hundreds of flashlight apps available, the advantage of this is its sheer simplicity - no settings, no advertising, no user interface. Taking up less space than an average email, it’s a flashlight app minus the flashiness.
Here's the link to download the Icon Torch app.
Read our full guide on how you can improve field worker safety in your business.