Minimising the risks to lone workers on remote scaffolding

Ensuring the safety and wellbeing of your workforce is of paramount importance.

Careful consideration should be given to higher risk processes, such as working at height or in enclosed spaces.

On one site, lone workers on remote scaffolding were highlighted as a significant risk and as such, the following measures were implemented to minimise the issue:

  • A flashing beacon was installed at the entrances of the scaffold, the beacons were attached to a sign which read ‘scaffold is active when beacon flashes’. The beacon signified to everyone on site that the scaffold was active and that there was work in progress;
  • At the end of the day a designated 2 man team patrols and inspects each active scaffold and if all was good the beacon would be switched off and scaffold secured with access locked. This ensures that no operatives were left on the scaffold and that the scaffold is safe, clean and tidy;
  • If an operative was working on the scaffold alone they were provided with a sky guard communication device. This device has a GPS system which enables the location of the lone worker to be pin pointed to within meters and is connected to a 24/7 call centre which facilitates a two way conversation. The alarm was also fitted with a fall detection system which activated in the event of sudden movements or sudden stops.

The sky guard personal protective device can be used by any lone worker in construction, including Residents Liaison Officers who often work unaccompanied.

For more information about the Sky Guard device, click the resource below:

Sky Guard Website


Footer Reference

Monitor Report, British Gas Trading Ltd, Scotland, July 2015


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