The British Security Industry Association (BSIA) has highlighted the value of lone worker devices which it says have saved taxpayers around £60 million in the past year as a result of reducing false call outs to alarms by police forces.

The Association says the growing number of organisations, such as the NHS, local councils, housing associations and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), using accredited lone worker devices is having a welcome impact on the burden faced by the police in reducing unnecessary call outs to alarms.

Using BS 8484 accredited systems, the lone worker industry is now only passing a tiny percentage — between 0.1 and 0.2% — of all lone worker generated alarms to the police through lone worker unique reference numbers (URNs).

The balance, of false alarms, are effectively being filtered out by alarm receiving centres (ARCs) and thereby saving valuable police resources.

The effect of all this, according to the BSIA, is not only reduced costs to the taxpayer but also enabling an effective response to those situations which are potentially life-threatening for workers.

The typical cost of responding to a false alarm is £150, but with the implementation of lone worker systems across a variety of organisations, it is estimated that nationally these systems have saved the taxpayer £60 million in the past 12 months alone.

Will Murray, Chair of the Lone Worker Section at BSIA, said: “At a time when security concerns, health and safety and police budget cuts are prevalent, the use of BS 8484 accredited systems is playing a significant role in reducing costs and ensuring greater safety to both the public and the lone worker community.”

Last reviewed 5 November 2018