Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Sirius

Lone working and safety in forestry

Recommended Posts

Only solution is get another worker on site.

An estate, you say? What cost to hire another bod vs the legal fallout if you were killed or maimed. Work will be more efficient with two as well.

Failing that, my choice would be a satalite distress beacon, like they use on boats. You pull the pin and it transmits your location to the coast guard, mountain rescue etc. Hillwalkers sometimes use them. Don't know if it would transmit under a forest canopy though, would have to check.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have a look at McMurdo Fast Find 220 satellite system one-off cost of £204. Also Garmin Inreach Satellite Communication which tracks and shares your whereabouts and can trigger SOS help and costs £282 - £415 depending on model and for a safety only plan costs £15.99/month. I work alone at times and have had a McMurdo Fast Find for 5 years but fortunately haven't needed it but quite like the look of the Garmin Inreach Mini. On reception within woodland areas, I find my Garmin map GPS normally has reception these days.

 

HSE guidance for industry on chainsaw use is that operators should not normally work alone.

 

On H&S at Work Regulations every employer shall take account the capabilities of employees in entrusting tasks to them which includes adequate H&S training for new work equipment/changes in activity but if not comfortable working at hight say so, particularly if it wasn't what you were initially employed to do.

 

The degree of care, the amount of effort required and money needed to be expended by the employer will depend on the magnitude of the risk however stringent precautions would still be necessary where the chances of an accident happening are quite small but the resulting injuries are likely to be serious.

 

Edited by Vedhoggar
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Really u either need some sort of sat PLB or tracker.

 

Basically a PLB is a single use emergency holy sh*t button, should get a signal anywhere, just buy the machine and no monthly payments

 

If ur employed would be worth the estate going down the tracker option as they can see exactly where u are so even if u can't push the emergency button they can tell where u are. 

U will have monthly fees but can be added to ur smart phone to send sat texts etc.

 

 

There is also a company called trackplot based in Edinburgh that monitor ur satellite trackers.

Always meant to get more info and prices, but think if ur tracker hasn't moved or u haven't checked in they wil either phone u or ur employers/forester for the wood ur working in that day.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I see a gap in the market for a gadget. A heart monitor, possibly combined with a smartwatch, that alarms if your vital signs get out of whack. If you go unconscious etc. If you don't address the alarm and reset within a timeframe, it triggers a distress call. There's already a "man down" app for phones that trigger if the phone goes horizontal.

Of course, all these gadgets are fine and good and much better than nothing, but they can't stem an arterial bleed.

Working alone is perfectly safe 90% of the time, as the majority of the work is moving about, moving things, setting up, organization, etc. The only really dangerous part is running the saw, and that shouldn't be dangerous if the prep work has been done thouroughly. Working with the wrong partner can be more dangerous than working alone.



  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just be mindful that being assertive with employers over personal safety can be a double-edged sword.

 

I know of one organisation where the workers got quite militant over health and safety for lone workers, so the employer put in place a number of measures to protect the workers. The Trade Union went away happy talking about the 'victory for workers rights' that they had achieved.

On the whole what the employer had implemented a series of different employee trackers. They also implemented a policy of 'zero tolerance' for breaches of h&s.
Now they know where and when Bob is and if he is on the move. It does means that they are quickly alerted to a potential accident. It also means no quick fag breaks or afternoon naps for him. Big brother is watching.
Now if Fred stops moving and he forgets to phone in to say that he is taking a piss, that is a disciplinary. If he does it several times, he is an unemployed lone worker. After all, no employer would tolerate an unsafe worker not working the guidelines that they themselves wanted?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The trackers are only trackers they can't tell u wot ur doing.

 

Can they really tell the difference between u having a piss/ fag break or sharpening saw, cutting toes off/felling a tree or even snedding a tree.

Will only give a location to a 5 or 10m square and only every 5 or 10 mins ( depending how set up).

 

Yes if ur taking piss and driving to bacon butty vans and shops every break ( assuming ur not allowed to or to far away) or leaving jobs early often then yes u will get found out.

 

There is a happy medium trackers aren't spy cameras but u do need something if ur working in areas with no mobile signal, even if working in pairs.

Always mind my 1st +F course and instructor really hammered home how important it is to get word to emergency services if something hits the fan. 

Not that unusual to have a 30+ min walk to van plus 20+ min drive to get a signal on some forestry sites.

Long time if bleeding out or crushed

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 18/07/2020 at 10:05, s o c said:

Totally unacceptable working/employment conditions.

if, God forbid, you have an accident doing this kind of work alone, I’m not sure your employers insurance would pay out as industry best practice not observed.

if you get badly cut or crushed you only have minutes .

Sorry if this sounds harsh 

Absolutely correct. Plus now you have posted, indefensible.  K

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You can have all the most up to date tracking/ pinpointing gadgets in the world, but

If you get crushed, or zapped unconscious, or cut to the bone, they’re only of limited use telling someone where you are. There is no substitute for a trained partner working with you who can help you within that first minute.

I would tell your boss you’re no longer working solo, and if he is any boss at all will put buddy working arrangements in place.

Forestry commission banned it years ago, whoever you are.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  •  

  • Featured Adverts

  • Tip site reviews

About

Arbtalk.co.uk is a hub for the arboriculture industry in the UK.  
If you're just starting out and you need business, equipment, tech or training support you're in the right place.  If you've done it, made it, got a van load of oily t-shirts and have decided to give something back by sharing your knowledge or wisdom,  then you're welcome too.
If you would like to contribute to making this industry more effective and safe then welcome.
Just like a living tree, it'll always be a work in progress.
Please have a look around, sign up, share and contribute the best you have.

See you inside.

The Arbtalk Team

Follow us

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.