The renewable energy industry produces more than 20% of the UK’s energy and as climate control measures are put in place that number is only going to rise. Renewable energy includes wind, wave, marine, hydro, biomass, and solar power and employs more than 10.3 million worldwide. Jobs in the renewables energy industry include the research, production, installation and maintenance of renewable energy products and many of those people work alone for long periods of time.
As with other energy sources such as oil or gas, the risks to lone workers in the renewable energy industry are great. Many renewable energy sites are isolated by their nature. Whether they are hydropower plants, wind or solar farms, many of these locations are off the beaten track and can be difficult to reach and stay in communication with in the event of an emergency.
Risks can include:
Wind turbine blade failure, including blades collapsing, falling off or being thrown from the turbine
Remote location working, whether offshore, on the road or on solar farms increases the impact of potential incidents and difficulties in raising alarm and maintaining communication
Working at extreme height on turbines or in confined spaces of hydropower plants with limited access, alongside high-risk machinery and equipment
In such a rapidly growing industry, both employers and employees in the renewable energy sector have a responsibility to work safely and effectively. In order to drive the growth needed to meet global targets for clean energy, renewable energy organisations need to scale their health and safety processes too.
Lone workers operating in remote locations, possibly even offshore, are placed under extra pressure, and being isolated can take both an emotional and physical toll. Being a socially responsible energy company means taking responsibility for your worker's wellbeing, as well as the wellbeing of the planet.
Working with new technology means new kinds of risk. Accounting for the dangers of working in hydropower plants with limited access and with sections below sea level, or the extreme height of wind turbines is the responsibility of both lone working employers and employees and must be considered.
Conducting thorough risk assessments that are bespoke to your industry and the lone working roles are integral in delivering an effective safety solution. Speak to your workers directly and understand the kind of risks they see when working offshore or with new technology. The playbook for risk in the renewable energy industry is still being written. Do your part by developing bespoke resources that can reduce the potential for accident and injury.
Clear policies and lines of communication are hugely important when it comes to worker safety. Ensure that all lone working staff know who to call if they have concerns and what to do in an emergency. Write a comprehensive lone working policy and ensure all staff have access.
Working in isolation and out of reach means that an incapacitated or trapped worker may not be able to get help in an emergency. With Safepoint’s lone worker safety solution, if a task expires, guardians are alerted and can take action.
Robust management tools
Safepoint helps you meet health and safety requirements and legally safeguard your organisation for the future. Manage your lone workers simply and effectively, and make informed safety decisions in real-time.
Smart, effective protection
Safepoint offers smart protection for lone workers in the field. Your employees can request help in case of emergency and the app alerts Guardians in the event a task duration expires. Your lone workers are safeguarded wherever they are.
Visibility and real-time updates
Safepoint shares vital safety information including GPS location, battery life and signal strength, instantly keeping Guardians and lone workers updated. Data is only shared during an active task so lone worker privacy is maintained.
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