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What is a Panic Alarm?
A panic alarm is a communications system that’s designed to contact assistance quicker, easier and simpler than a phone call. It can be a physical button that’s hidden or unobtrusive or a digital device that staff can carry with them.

All businesses can benefit from the reassurance that a quick, reliable way to call for help is available. But they’re especially suited to industries, settings and roles that involve frequent customer interaction or risk violence.
What is a Panic Alarm?

A panic alarm is a device, often worn around the neck, wrist or carried as a mobile app which can be activated to call for help in dangerous situations when it may not be safe or practical to use a telephone. It can also be used to alert colleagues when an incident is escalating, before the situation reaches its peak.

In the workplace, it’s a very effective way to protect staff in the event of an attack or when they need immediate medical assistance. It can also be an excellent way to demonstrate your business’ commitment to staff safety and fulfil legal obligations in these areas.

Depending on the type of panic alarm you have installed, the button can be activated to send a live message to a remote security control room or to a member of staff at a nearby desk. If a live operator is listening, they will be able to give the person calling for help their exact location in order to speed up emergency response times.

Alternatively, the device can be activated to trigger a silent panic alarm which doesn’t alert any unwanted intruders. This can be a great option for users who are worried about causing alarm to other people, or for whom it might be uncomfortable to raise the alarm in front of colleagues.
How does a Panic Alarm Work?

Panic alarm systems are comprised of two main parts: the panic button and a communications system. When the panic button is pressed, it sends an alert directly to security personnel. This alert can be silent and can also include a GPS location of the device to ensure emergency services can get to the scene of an incident quickly.

Man Down Alert The panic button is often a small, discreet device that can be carried on a lanyard or keyring as part of a lone worker safety solution (like our SoloProtect ID Touch). It provides users with a way to subtly call for help when it’s not safe to make your voice heard, such as during an assault or in situations where the threat is so severe that it would be too dangerous to attempt calling for assistance over the phone.

When a panic alarm is activated, it triggers an alert to the security control centre and any designated monitors, depending on your organisation’s setup. This could be an off-site alarm monitoring centre or an on-site security hub, such as at a business with multiple sites. The communication system can be set to immediately notify specific personnel, such as local police or emergency services, so that they are aware of a potential situation on site and can dispatch officers promptly. It can also be configured to send the alert to non-security staff, such as management or colleagues of the lone worker, so that they can offer support and assist in diffusing an incident without potentially alerting the assailant.
What are the Different Kinds of Panic Alarms?

The term “panic alarm” may bring to mind images of a bank teller discreetly calling for help as a would-be robber demands cash. While this is one use case for lone worker panic buttons, there are other ways that they can be useful in business settings.

For instance, some traditional panic alarms emit a loud sound when activated to draw attention to the situation in the hopes that someone will come running. This is useful in places where robberies or other incidents are common, such as stores dealing with large amounts of money or behind receptionist desks.

Alternatively, some systems offer a silent alert that only notifies offsite emergency contacts to request assistance. These systems are often used for workers who cannot reach or use their phones for any reason, such as housekeepers, nurses, or correctional officers. They also work well for remote locations that are not within range of a network connection.

Another option is a mobile personal safety device that works with a smartphone app to send an alert and live GPS tracking. These devices can be clipped to a keychain or lanyard, worn around the neck or wrist, or kept in a pocket. They are useful for a variety of different industries, and can be integrated into a larger security system as well as stand alone. A great example is Safepoint’s staff protection package which includes a discreet Bluetooth panic button that pairs with an easy-to-use app.
Where can Panic Alarms be Used?

Panic alarms are an important part of a complete home security system for several reasons. They help to make calling for assistance quicker, easier, and simpler than a normal phone call. They can also help to prevent a crime from happening by signaling a criminal that someone is in distress and needs assistance.

These discreet, monitored devices are often worn by lone workers on a lanyard or keyring and are activated when there is an immediate threat to personal safety (such as a robbery or physical attack). A monitor will be alerted instantly and a call will be made directly to the relevant emergency services – bypassing 999. An operator will listen in and provide reassurance to the lone worker until help arrives.

In addition to lone workers, the technology can be used in other settings where there is risk of social aggression or assault. Schools, healthcare settings, council offices, customer service counters, retail premises and even HR interview rooms are all good candidates for these devices.

The device will communicate with a monitoring centre when it’s pressed, so it can also be used in hospitals for patients who may need medical support. The communication system can also be set up to send an alert to any other members of staff who are nearby, including those in remote locations, so they can get to the scene and offer support.
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