Vested with safety

Vested with safety

Every employee has the right to be safe and secure at their place of work, even if they have a high-risk occupation. Security guards, law enforcement and emergency response personnel can now feel more confident about their safety thanks to South African-based Jasco Group’s new body-worn security technology.

Being a security guard is a risky business … you’re the person who is going to stand in the way of someone who probably wants to commit a crime. There is, however, more to this sector than sidearms and handcuffs.

Jasco has added a range of body-worn surveillance solutions to its security portfolio, which was launched at Securex South Africa (held in conjunction with A-OSH Expo, from May 12 to 14, at the Gallagher Convention Centre).

“These integrated body-worn tracking and surveillance solutions offer the security and other industry sectors the capabilities they need to better manage personnel, improve service delivery, lower costs and meet service level agreements with their customers,” says Eckart Zollner, head of business development at the Jasco Group.

“The solution has been tested in the market over the past four years and has proved to be efficient in terms of the model and the technology being used,” he continues. “With the support of the Jasco Group, our security and technology expertise, and national footprint, we believe this product has the potential to gain significant market share locally and in sub-Saharan Africa.”

The technology enables real-time tracking with geotagging and streaming of visuals. It has enormous potential to improve management, safety, cost and operational efficiencies in a number of industries; including security, transport and logistics, emergency response, law enforcement and facility management.

The solution combines GPS location and tracking technologies with a body-worn camera that sends real-time images, even in low-bandwidth conditions, to a dedicated centrally hosted server. Each client is issued with their own monitoring software and provided with a secure log-in to control each vest – to activate audio, visuals or tracking, as needed, for example.

What sets it apart?

“The solutions portfolio presents a good fit with our security, networking, communications and other businesses,” Zollner points out. “While there are similar products in the market, few are able to stream real-time visuals, provide geotagging and enable remote control of features. There are a number of differentiators.

“The real-time image and video-streaming technology includes advanced compression algorithms that enable use even in low-bandwidth environments. A copy of the footage is stored in the vest unit, but is simultaneously streamed live to the cloud, to a server on the client’s premises, and to the data centre.

“The cameras on the vest can be controlled remotely by authorised personnel and managers. If the camera or tracking is switched off, an alert is generated at the control room. A number of additional functions are supplied as standard, such as a panic button, audio surveillance, geo-fencing and no-movement alarms.

“The range of solutions are locally developed and locally manufactured.

“Full support is provided nationally by Jasco’s sales and technical teams. This covers activation and maintenance of the vests, technical support to manage the vests and access to the control room for live viewing. In addition, with a full software-development team, Jasco is able to respond to customers bespoke development requirements.”

What’s it good for?

In the security and guarding industry:

• Monitoring guards to ensure they stick to schedules and routes. This means the company no longer needs to deploy a supervisor to physically spot-check personnel.

• In dangerous situations, or when responding to an incident, the body cameras can provide real-time footage to provide irrefutable evidence of conditions at arrival, support actions taken, and can enable decision-making as the situation develops (for example, potentially alert monitoring agents of the need for backup). This will minimise disputes (such as “whether or not the window was broken at arrival”), ensure security staff abide by regulations in their actions and that they are better protected.

In the transport and logistics industry:

• Drivers can be tracked via GPS to ensure scheduled routes are followed.

• It can monitor if drivers take the required rest stops and that no illegal passengers are in the vehicle.

In law enforcement:

• It monitors that police action meets legal restraints and rights are not abused; that police receive the backup they need; and ensures that the actions of perpetrators are fully recorded.

In facility management:

• In shopping centres, railway and bus stations and terminals, the vests can be worn by security personnel to record actions and incidents, improve apprehension and identification of perpetrators, limit collusion and monitor traffic flows.

In industry, mines and utilities – maintenance and troubleshooting:

• The vest provides a set of eyes to supervisors where oversight is required of sensitive or complex projects in the field.

• The real-time visuals will enable engineers or other experts to provide informed, hands-free guidance where maintenance needs to be performed remotely.

In high-value goods transport:

• Security guards wearing these vests will, in the case of incidents, be able to record their view of events, potentially improving the quality of evidence. And the vests will limit collusion.

In emergency rescue:

• Teams on the ground wearing the vest will provide coordinators with a first-hand view of the situation, helping to inform subsequent actions.

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SHEQ Management

SHEQ MANAGEMENT is the definitive source for reliable, accurate and pertinent information to guarantee environmental health and safety in the workplace.
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