What is a Lone Worker Device?

What is a Lone Worker Device?

As digital and two-way radios become more and more vital for teams across a variety of organisations, the work carried out can differ. Often, employees can find themselves working independently or even on-site alone. Two-way and digital radios are designed to keep both staff and visitors safe. 

The purpose of a lone worker device is for your employer to keep you safe within a team, as well as the staff who work alone. As there are more and exclusive risks with working alone, the lone worker device is an essential tool to keep you away from these risks.

What is a Lone Worker Device?

A lone worker safety device is a discreet and undetectable tool which allows for communication with employers and emergency services.

The devices themselves are usually radio systems such as two-way walkie talkie, but can also be much more discreet devices in the form of an earpiece or an app.

Lone Worker Safety

Within your team or organisation, working alone is completely legal and is usually safe to do so. Your company should have carried out a risk assessment before placing you in a situation where you would be working independently. 

For an idea of what you need for your business or site, read our blog on lone worker radio systems for construction workers, here

two way radio

Lone Worker Function

The Lone Worker function, also known as a Lone Worker Alarm is designed with solo workers in mind. It is an efficient, simple and quick way of ensuring the safety of workers throughout the working day. This function will provide managers and supervisors with regular updates on their wellbeing and the smooth running of their work. This will give both workers, supervisors and visitors peace of mind that their safety is cared for and monitored.

Lone worker devices feature the Man Down function, a great way of alerting supervisors on the safety of workers. The mission sensor sends an alarm to supervisors when:

  • The radio holder is moving more than what is considered the usual amount for the job at hand
  • The radio is completely stationary
  •  The radio is positioned at an unusual angle for a longer period of time.

Most digital radios have the ability to be updated with lone worker functions. Get in touch with one of our experts during set up for any guidance you need. Learn more about lone worker function here, in our recent blog.

What is a Lone Worker Device?

Lone Worker and Man Down Function | How Can They Help You

Digital two way radios are a vital tool for keeping members of staff in constant communication. Even when working in a large team, employees may find themselves working alone. In some industries, workers may find themselves working in remote locations without direct supervision. In these situations there is usually no other workers around to provide risk assessments or to help in an emergency situation. In these instances, two way radios can become much more than communication devices, but an important device that ensures workers safety. The additional functions that can be added to some radios are the Lone Worker and Man Down functions that turn these communication devices into potentially life saving tools. 

What is Lone Worker function?

The Lone Worker function, also known as Lone Worker Alarm is a quick, simple and efficient method of ensuring all workers safety. This function allows for supervisors to get updates on the workers safety at regular intervals. At a selected time interval the worker’s radio will beep, prompting the worker to press the push-to-talk button to signify they are safe and well. However, if the worker does not press the push-to-talk button within a certain time period when promoted, an alarm will be sent to their supervisor to alert them of their emergency status. 

Which radios can support the Lone Worker function?

The answer is most digital two way radios. However, the Lone Worker function would need to be set up by your radio supplier when radio programming.

lone worker




Man Down Functions

The Man Down function is another fast and efficient way of alerting supervisors on the safety of the workers. This function works through using a tilt-switch which is effectively a motion sensor. The motion sensor sends an alarm to supervisors when:

  • The radio holder is moving more than what is considered normal for their job
  • The radio user is not moving at all
  • The radio user is positioned in an unusual angle for a period of time 

To prevent false alarms and to compensate for the tilt-switch picking up on non-emergency situations, the two way radio will send an alert to the radio holder to signify that the alarm will be sent out to the supervisors. This gives the radio holder the option to disarm the alert if no assistance is required.

Another benefit of the Man Down function is that it can sometimes be configured to automatically open the mic and communicate what is happening in the radio’s surroundings to other radio users. This can be vital in an emergency situation when a worker needs to talk to other workers, but is unable to use the push-to-talk button. 

Which radios can support the Man Down function?

The man down function generally is only supported by middle to high tier digital two way radios. .  

Using these functions not only gives the workers peace of mind that their safety is being monitored even when they are working alone, but it also mitigates HSE fines by showing that the business is taking precautions to keep their employees safe. 

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