Body Worn Cameras: The Future Of Lone Worker Safety
It is always important to consider one’s safety when put in an unpredictable environment where uncertainty is inevitable. Particularly when staff are away from their main office or depot, either making deliveries, performing inspections, offering security etc.
Therefore, companies and their human resource departments must do more to ensure the safety of the lone worker?
As we all know, a lone worker is someone who is placed in an isolated location to carry out a job without any direct supervision, whether it is a delivery driver, security staff or remote engineer. In this situation, HR can’t really do anything about it if there happens to be a health and safety issue regarding that employee. So, the safety of such a lone worker is questioned here.
During times like these, the company provides the employee with the right training to react in an isolated scenario and gives certain protective tools for responding to unpredictable circumstances. But what are these tools and how legit are they when there is a safety-related issue? Or if an incident has escalated to the point where courts are involved.
One of the most reliable devices for lone workers are body cameras or body worn cameras as they are also known, which, on initial inspection you would not think these would be a good method of providing safety for your employee but with the application of the right camera they can add a level of protection and safety that would leave your staff feeling more secure.
These kinds of cams are placed on the torso (or any other convenient position) of the lone worker and record everything in a much more subtle manner, and they are small and lightweight enough that they will not interfere with the course of the persons work.
How Do Body Cameras Provide Safety To The Lone Workers
Body Cameras provide a unique form of safety when it is considered a form of protection for the lone worker with the following reasons that explain how useful the lone worker body cameras are:
1. Obvious and In Plain Sight
When it comes to protection devices, previously it has been beneficial for the lone worker to keep any device discreet and hidden.
However, body cameras are not like that. These cameras are specifically placed in plain sight and are positioned to be visible to the perpetrator.
Making the camera obvious and visible does seem like an illogical choice but a study conducted by the NHS in the UK stated that if the aggressor is aware of the camera, the mere fact that he/she will know they are being recorded would prevent them from taking action against the lone worker.
So, evidence shows that the camera causes aggressive people to modify their behavior to be non-threatening when confronted with a recording of their unruly behaviour, which could be used as evidence in court.
2. Video Evidence
One of the major purposes of the body worn camera is to record everything that happens to the lone worker. Some might claim that this is an invasion of privacy as most of the time the worker would not be at ease would himself/herself have to be extra cautious and always alert of all the things that he/she might do or say. However CCTV is a way of live in Ireland and their recordings are frequently used in Irish courts, so with the correct camera the footage obtained would be extremely useful in any court dealings.
But in the event of something happening, like being attacked or verbally abused by an aggressor, the body-worn camera footage can be used as proof against the perpetrator if the matter escalates and is taken to court. Now that audio recording features have become available on these devices, no offender can walk away by getting expensive lawyers.
3. Live Stream
Live streaming is a new service which increases the safety of lone workers. These cameras are linked to the Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC). This center responds to emergency situations where lone workers might be facing some distress.
But now, many modern body-worn cameras come with a live streaming service that goes straight to the ARC where staff can see what emergency has occurred on the site and can guide the lone worker to take the appropriate steps.
With this, the ARC can accurately predict what to do next and will have a much more realistic solution than just relying on audio files. This is how the body-worn cameras have improved the safety of the lone worker in harsh times as well.
3. Secure and Tamper Proof
A key feature of our body cameras is that they are all designed to be extremely tough and rugged and impossible to tamper with in order to protect anything that they record. In order for the video to be useful and admissible in a legal situation, the recordings must be completely trustworthy and record exactly what occured without editing. We have a 100% guarantee that any of our body cameras offer complete reliablity from tampering.
We understand that the lone worker may be working a variety of weathers, lighting, time of year and environments so the cameras are designed to work seamlessly and continuously without needing any adjustment or maintenance by the lone worker out on the job. This makes them able to be worn and forgotten and become as much a part of a staff members uniform as their boots or polo shirt. They put them on and get on with their work.
4. Training Aid
One of the best ways to learn is visually and for trainee members of staff to be able to watch actual real world examples of the job they will be undertaking, and the possible difficulties they will face and how to deal with them.
The recording would also be used for existing staff to go back and analyse how they performed their job, how they potentially went wrong, and in what they they could improve. This would be particularly useful in a disciplinary setting or a post disciplinary training session.
The lone worker body-worn cameras are surely a modern-day solution and tool to protect lone workers from threats, but many raise the concern of the privacy of the lone worker as the recorded video and audio are stored for future reference purposes.
There are even some policies that prevent companies from using security cameras on workers for privacy matters, but as these cameras are bodyworn and the staff are fully aware of their use, this is clearly not secretive filming. These cameras are a safety device for you staff, particularly when out on the road or making deliveries to homes and businesses, hence the cameras are being used at a much larger scale than ever anticipated.
With proper training and staff awareness, there should be no issues with respect to privacy concerns, and the feedback from companies whose staff have started using bodyworn cameras has been universally positive with many staff feeling safer knowing their actions are being documented securely, for both their and the publics safety.
So, the body-worn cameras are more useful than one might think, and the technology surrounding this sector of the industry is increasing to get better protect and offer safety for lone workers.