Technology

Cambridge contractor develops new H&S app

29 September 2014 | By Elaine Knutt

A division of Cambridge-based civil engineering and utilities contractor John Henry Group has developed a new smartphone app to help protect members of the public and its site-based staff from the potential hazards of construction sites.

Geo-sight is rolling out a self-titled app, which it hopes will encourage good health and safety practice for other companies across the UK.

The app has already been trialled on projects delivered by John Henry Group, which works in the telecoms, highways and utilities sectors.

Geo-sight lets workers record live images on their phones which are then digitally tagged to a location map and time and date stamped, before being sent to a central database for the contractor’s records.

The system will also allow near real-time assessment of potential hazards by managers or H&S specialists situated off site.

Geo-sight’s lead developer, James Carson, said: “Construction sites can be dangerous places for both members of the public and for on-site workers.

“It’s important for civil engineering and other construction organisations to show we are working both safely and effectively. Because the images captured by workers are sent to a central database, it also allows a second opinion from health and safety experts – meaning a decision can be made on whether it’s safe to go on site or whether the site has been left in a safe manner, also minimising risk to members of the public.

“Considering that more than 80% of the UK uses smart phones, it means that they are an excellent platform to use Geo-sight to deliver and create awareness about the importance of health and safety.

“It’s also a great way of measuring employee performance and an effective way of measuring the development of construction projects, particularly public projects, as they develop.”

Following the in-house trials, the app is now commercially available to download from both Apple’s and Android’s App Stores, although a licence is required to record site information.