In December 2019 Scottish Water deployed over 250 SPOT Gen3 satellite messengers to safeguard employees who work on their own in areas with unreliable or non-existent mobile coverage.
Hundreds of Scottish Water employees work in remote parts of the country, often solo, managing assets including the reservoirs that supply water to over 2.54 million households and 152,000 businesses. While 49 remote-working teams are already using SPOT, Scottish Water is also offering devices to all other employees who are registered as lone workers. These employees now have a communications lifeline wherever they are, with small, robust SPOT Gen3 devices that communicate reliably over Globalstar’s Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite network.
Scottish Water has pre-configured the SPOT Gen3 devices with two services: if an employee has an emergency, they can press SPOT’s one-touch SOS button; there is also a help button for non-life-threatening situations, such as a flat tyre. Pressing either button automatically transmits the user’s precise GPS location to Scottish Water’s internal communications centre (ICC). The ICC either contacts the emergency services or locates a nearby Scottish Water team who can help their colleague.
Scottish Water chose SPOT Gen3 because of its ease of use, its robustness and the accuracy of its GPS transmissions. Before deploying SPOT earlier in 2019, Scottish Water relied solely on a system where employees registered their planned movements by phone then, if they did not call back by an agreed time, the issue would be escalated through their line managers.
“With winter around the corner we expect SPOT to come into its own as an important part of our health and safety strategy,” said Kes Juskowiak, Water Operations General Manager at Scottish Water. “With reliable satellite communications, we can get help to our employees whenever it is needed and wherever they might be. SPOT is a lifeline providing reassurance to families and colleagues that each lone worker is in safe hands.”