Protecting Lone Workers and Securing Vital Sustainable Technology – Case Study


The CIA (Chemical Industry Association) states that chemical industry is the UK’s largest manufacturing export sector with exports of nearly £50bn each year.

Whether it is developing cleaner and more efficient emission control solutions or developing the batteries that will power vehicles and other technology well into the future, these pioneering businesses are at the frontline of tackling climate change and meeting essential environmental legislation targets. One such business, a well-established chemical engineering and sustainable technologies research company, chose to invest in the latest intelligent critical communications systems.

The Need

The company had previously invested in a centralised communications server system for critical messaging. This relayed alerts to key team members and security personnel via a network of Spectralink DECT telephones, which were dispersed around the site in case of an incident (such as a fire or chemical spillage).  Whilst the system worked well, the company wanted to add a specific lone worker protection facility, along with the integration of intruder alarms.

Due to the potentially hazardous environment, the lone worker solution needed to ensure colleagues and the security & rescue teams would be notified of issues immediately. Specifically, an alert would be triggered by the lone worker or an automatic alarm would be raised and sent to colleagues if there was any unusual activity or delay.

The other key requirement of the upgrade was the ability to incorporate a direct input for intruder alarm systems. Not only do these alarms warn that a potentially dangerous intrusion or theft may be taking place, but they also warn if staff or visitors have inadvertently entered restricted areas.

The Solution

Multitone Electronics proposed an upgrade to its highly flexible and reliable i-Message solution.  This is designed to incorporate inputs from multiple communications or detection devices, and intelligently routes alerts to defined groups or individuals.

The Multitone i-Message solution encompasses full alarm centralisation, including intruder alarms and the previously integrated fire, gas and chemical alarms. Initial alerts are followed by automatic escalation to other team members if there is no response, which ensures calls are efficiently answered and acknowledged.

The Result

The solution provides lone worker protection and intruder alarm integration, whilst retaining the other alarm systems and the DECT handsets. Staff do not require additional training and there was no need to purchase new mobile smart devices or hardware to replace existing investments.

If a worker is in trouble an automatic alarm is raised, with the system recognising the location of the individual. This is then forwarded to their colleagues and the security staff, so all stakeholders are aware of who is in trouble and their location.

Husam Al-karnaz, Solutions Architect at Multitone, commented, “With potential integration with a variety of systems (including email, text, paging, voicemail, video, paging to voice, Wi-Fi, 2-way radio, and IP telephony), i-Message provides plenty of scope for the systems evolution in the future.”

Multitone’s i-Message platform has offered the chemical engineering company the additional functionality it needed, whilst retaining its legacy investments, offering both value for money and convenience, without compromising on performance or the flexibility to meet future needs.