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Coombes Forestry launch ‘man-down’ smartphone app to protect their at risk lone workers

Leading forestry contractor Coombes use the StaySafe app downloaded onto their smartphones to monitor employee safety via GPS and alerts. 


Employees at Coombes, who work on arboricultural projects for organisations including the Forestry Commission and Crown Estates, are often required to undertake work at height and use potentially dangerous machinery. To better meet their duty of care to their employees and accurately monitor their safety whilst they work, Coombes have launched BS8484 accredited lone worker safety solution StaySafe. 

StaySafe is an app and surrounding cloud-based monitoring service which tracks a lone workers location via GPS and alerts their manager if they do not check-in within a specified time. The app works on iPhone, Android and BlackBerry and offers a wide range of functions including a panic button, working session expiry, GPS tracking, inactivity and duress alerts. If an employee activates the app’s panic button or fails to check in, alerts are automatically triggered on screen and via text and email, allowing an employer to take immediate action. Coombes undertake the monitoring of their employees in-house via an online hub but monitoring can also be outsourced to one of StaySafe’s 24/7 monitoring and response partners. 

“StaySafe is a powerful app that has been quickly adopted by our staff as they carry smartphones already” explains Kim Bedford at Coombes Forestry. “As well as the check in features and GPS monitoring the non-movement alert was a key selling point for us. We now get an alert if an employee has been inactive for a period of time and if we can’t get hold of them we can start procedures to check on their wellbeing immediately. This early indication that something might be wrong can provide us with vital time to get help to an employee who may have had an accident but was unable to signal for help”.   

Don Cameron, CEO, StaySafe Business adds “Latest HSE statistics show that the risk of an employee being injured from a fall or using machinery is present in nearly 50% of workplaces in the UK. Lone workers are particularly vulnerable in the event of an accident as there is no one to raise the alarm. StaySafe offers peace of mind to both employers and staff that if an incident occurs they can respond quickly and accurately to prevent situations from escalating”. 

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