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Personal Safety Blog

12 July 2016
 July 12, 2016
bag2

Skyguard’s Travel Safe Checklist

If you’ve planned a trip abroad this summer, it’s important that you are aware of how to keep yourself and your belongings safe. Although for the most part foreign travel is perfectly safe, taking precaution when in unfamiliar territory is wise.

Below is Skyguard’s checklist to help you plan for a safe trip abroad.

Preparation is key – Research your destination before you travel, including the Foreign Office’s travel advice website. Take note of local customs and dress and ensure you follow the rules – there may be serious penalties for breaking the law.

Vaccinations – Numerous worldwide destinations require you to be vaccinated so make sure you are adequately immunised before setting off. It’s also vital to insure both yourself and your possessions prior to your trip, carrying with you any supporting documentation.

Do you need a visa? – Some countries also require you to obtain a visa before you enter. Ensure you apply for these well in advance of your planned departure. They can often take several weeks to arrive and you’re likely to be refused

29 June 2016
 June 29, 2016
housing

Housing staff feel ‘less safe’ at work compared to last year

According to research undertaken by Inside Housing magazine in June 2016, one in four social housing workers feel less safe doing their job this year, compared to last year. Focusing on 41 housing associations and 198 Councils across the UK, the survey revealed that 20% of respondents do not believe that their employer does enough to protect them.

Frontline housing workers expressed their concern at the idea of landlords making savings by cutting staff numbers. 35% of respondents said that reducing staff numbers made it increasingly likely that they would work alone.

As outlined by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), housing staff often face difficult or hostile situations, including having to deliver bad news to tenants such as evictions, working late at night, and exposure to potentially violent or aggressive members of the public, such as drug users. Working alone increases the vulnerability of employees performing these tasks.

Alarmingly, the Inside Housing results also revealed that as many as 10 Councils simply do not report or record assaults against housing staff, claiming there is often

25 May 2016
 May 25, 2016
Gavel

Ashleigh Ewing Ten Years On: Has Lone Working Changed?

Ten years ago, mental health worker Ashleigh Ewing was brutally killed whilst out working alone on behalf of her employer, Mental Health Matters (MHM). Ashleigh was stabbed 39 times by Ronald Dixon when she made a routine visit to his home in Heaton, Newcastle. Dixon, who had a long history of disturbing mental health problems, was locked-up in a secure hospital after admitting manslaughter.

In May 2013, a report by an independent panel concluded that a “more robust approach” to Dixon’s care, particularly from April 11, 2006, to the days leading up to Ashleigh’s death, would have resulted in a review as to how appropriate lone visits to Dixon’s home were.

22 year old graduate Ashleigh lost her life after being sent alone to Dixon’s home with a debtor’s letter ordering him to pay for a phone which he had smashed inside the property days earlier, to take the coins from inside.

Was it appropriate to send a young

20 May 2016
 May 20, 2016
elec

Equipping Engineers to Tackle Energy Theft Safely

The dark and dangerous world of energy theft is an ever-increasing problem. It’s estimated that stolen supplies of gas and electricity cost the industry £500 million per year.

Often, the crude methods used to illegally obtain supplies run the risk of fatal electric shocks and gas explosions – a high price to avoid paying what’s due. BBC1’s ‘The One Show’ recently reported on the issue stating that last year alone saw 150,000 reported cases of suspected meter tampering.

Field engineers employed by energy suppliers are responsible for inspecting properties suspected of theft. Naturally, with the threat of prosecution and serious consequences should they be found guilty, the inspections can rapidly escalate in to aggressive and hostile situations.

With the threat of danger both from potential offenders and hazardous environments, it is vital that gas Engineers have a means to call for help in an emergency. British Gas, the UK’s largest energy and home services supplier have recently turned to Skyguard to protect over 3,000 lone working Engineers. Employees have been equipped with Skyguard’s

16 May 2016
 May 16, 2016
summer

Coping in Extreme Heat

With a shortage of hot, sunny days in the UK, it is no wonder that their arrival is welcomed with open arms. Whilst basking in the sunshine is ideal for some, it is very important to recognise when enough heat is enough. High temperatures, especially for long periods of time carry serious health warnings.

Why is extreme heat a problem?

Very hot weather poses risks to anyone, including dehydration, overheating, heat exhaustion and heatstroke. It can also make heart and breathing problems worse, especially for the very young and the elderly. If you are taking certain medications such as those that control body temperate or sweating, you may wish to take extra precaution when temperatures are high.

8 Tips for keeping cool

The following tips are designed to prevent heat-related illness and help you keep cool and comfortable during hot summers days.

Drink plenty of fluids, regardless of how active you are going to be, avoiding high sugar content drinks – these can cause your body to lose more fluid.
Stay indoors if possible, especially during

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