Worker safety is one of those areas where the principle of ‘marginal gains’ applies.
Effective field worker safety comes as a result of assessing every aspect of a mobile work operation - no matter how large or small the potential risks.
And a major part of this kind of 360 degree approach is taking a close look at the kit and equipment that field workers use to carry out their tasks.
Thanks to technology and innovation, the ways that mobile workers are able to protect themselves are constantly improving.
Here’s a look at some field worker health and safety equipment options:
- LED Safety Vest
- VideoBadge VB-300
- SPOT Gen3
- Tablet Safety Vest
Tiredness and fatigue pose an ever-present threat to the safety of mobile workers. This is particularly so for drowsy workers who are prone to microsleeps while behind the wheel.
The SmartCap is designed to monitor this kind of risk and to alert workers when danger levels are identified. It uses a headband monitor which can be used with any kind of headwear - cap, hardhat or beanie.
It monitors brainwave activities, providing real-time information on fatigue levels. The data connects with an app and dashboard software to allow managers to keep track of tiredness levels across a team.
See the SmartCap for yourself here.
LED Safety Vest
Whether it’s negotiating a path at night or carrying out maintenance tasks in a dark environment, any low light conditions can increase the safety risks posed to field workers.
This safety vest provides a simple and effective solution with a bright 150 lumen LED light integrated into the overall. It’s able to illuminate a 13 metre area for around two and a half hours on the highest setting.
As well as allowing hands-free operations, it can be used on a lower setting with a flashing mode to ensure user visibility in the dark. The light is removable and can be recharged via USB.
Take a look at the LED Safety Vest here.
Body worn video (BWV) systems have become a familiar site in the UK with most police forces now equipping officers with chest-mounted cameras. They can be equally effective for any mobile working operation.
The VB-300 is a lightweight camera that easily attaches to a work vest or jacket and can stream and record real-time footage. It can be particularly effective for protecting lone workers when interacting with the public.
It also allows a remote operations manager to view a work site and to provide safety guidance or to verify that proper health and safety procedures have been followed.
A crucial part of maintaining mobile worker safety is always knowing where each employee is. This is something that can now be achieved via smartphone apps but this may not always work in remote areas with weak mobile signals.
A device such as the SPOT Gen 3 ensures that a mobile worker can always be located. Combining GPS and GSM satellite technology, it ensure that an SOS alert can be sent to emergency services from any location.
A less urgent help request is also available with a message and geolocation details sent out to a user defined group. It’s waterproof and designed to handle pretty much any kind of extreme environment.
See the SPOT Gen3 for yourself.
Tablet Safety Vest
As more mobile working operations become paperless and information is increasingly accessed via handheld devices, it creates a potential safety issue. Trying to carry out manual tasks while keeping sight of a smartphone or tablet screen is tricky.
One interesting solution is the Tablet Safety Vest by Hintzebelts. This is a work vest which provides users with a flip-down tablet holder to allow a device to be viewed while both hands remain free.
It allows any visual information, such as site plans or task instructions, to be easily followed. When the device is not needed, it securely flips back up to provide full mobility.