Clear-flow

Employee safety is a priority for South West-based drainage specialists, Clear-flow. In 2015, the company implemented Peoplesafe’s lone worker safety services, issuing personal alarms to assist those working alone in potentially vulnerable situations.

Having grown from being ‘one man and a van’ back in 1982, today the company has over 70 employees – the majority of which are based out and about on the road. Engineers work across Devon and Cornwall often attending call outs in rural areas which have little or no mobile phone signal. A typical day for the team includes all manner of tasks from unblocking drains, emptying septic tanks, carrying out sewer inspections and repairing collapsed pipes.

Jobs can involve working at height and with equipment that could pose a danger. As with any lone working role, there is a certain element of risk involved and engineers required a reliable method of calling for help should they need assistance. The company were looking for a solution that was a good fit for their strong health and safety ethos, carrying accreditation to the latest industry standard for lone working, BS 8484:2016.

Clear-flow opted to trial the MySOS, a pocket-sized personal alarm that provides users with round the clock support at the press of a button. On activation, employees can speak directly to Incident Managers at a specialist Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC) who can escalate to the emergency services if necessary. Not only does this offer employees a high level of protection, the device and Peoplesafe’s service are fully accredited to lone worker standard BS 8484:2016.

Health and Safety Manager at Clear-flow, Shaun Campbell, explains a few of the decisive factors that lead the company to choose MySOS, he says: “the size of the device was paramount, it’s small, compact and does not hinder our employees whilst working.”

He added “Roaming SIMs are also invaluable for where we work, as phone signals can vary from location to location and this is excellent for finding the strongest signal, even in the most remote locations in Cornwall and Devon.”

With lone worker alarms rolled out across the company, Shaun also commented on how staff find the devices reassuring.

“All our drivers use the device, plus several office staff who work weekends on their own. Our drivers are spread across Cornwall, Devon and now into the Bristol area and to give them a peace of mind while being away from their depots is very important.”

Shaun Campbell, Health & Safety Manager

Speaking of the trial, he added “before we committed to going live, we took advantage of Peoplesafe’s free trial which really helped make our mind up as although we tried other devices at the same time, Peoplesafe stood above the rest for its size, roaming SIM ability and affordability, backed by great customer service.”

As Health and Safety Manager, the Peoplesafe Portal provides Shaun with an easy way to monitor the service, as he explains: “the portal is excellent as I manage the devices using it. It’s very customer friendly; easy to monitor usage, update and more importantly know where your employees are and that they’re safe and well.”

One of the options that Clear-flow found most impressive is fall detection which senses impact and can raise an alarm automatically if a user falls. Shaun says: “should our operative be unable to press the SOS button manually, the fall detection sensor within the device will activate the alarm and Peoplesafe will be immediately alerted to a potential problem.”

As Shaun explains, this came in especially handy when an employee suffered a fall: “we had one operative who slipped down a staircase outside and the device raised the alarm automatically. He was quite flustered but Peoplesafe contacted him straight away ensuring his welfare which gave him peace of mind.

Our emergency escalation with Peoplesafe is for them to also call our 24/7 on-call operations member of staff, so our employee was also contacted by our office staff to ensure he was ok. Great team work between the Peoplesafe ARC and our on-call team!”