29 June 2021 | Innovation

Putting safety in your pocket, with added intelligence

Since HAUC(UK)’s founding in 1986, it has brought together highway authorities, utilities and government to work safely and smartly to reduce the impact of street and road works on members of the public throughout the UK.

HAUC(UK) wants to ensure that every highways operative has the information they need to dig safely and responsibly, right there in their pocket.

Last year, HAUC(UK) launched an app to give the workforce instant and mobile access to ‘the Red Book’ a code of practice to safely carry out signing, lighting and guarding of street works and road works on all highways and roads, except motorways and any dual carriageways with a speed limit of 50 mph or more.

The Code needs to be observed by anyone, including supervisors, managers, planners and designers who are responsible for making sure that all street and road works are safe for all.

Failure to comply with the Code for both utility companies and road and street authorities across the UK (including Scotland from November 2021) is a criminal office and a copy of the Red Book should be available at all works.

HAUC(UK) wanted to give users access to a portable and searchable view of the Red Book, which is 108 pages long- and last year released an app to do just that.

The app also holds an interactive check list for working on site for common activities, and crucially in the era of COVID-19, all of the latest health and safety updates and advice from HAUC(UK).

Since its launch six months ago, there has been over 13,000 users. HAUC(UK) is working hard to develop extra functionality and to encourage even greater usage of the app by highways planners and operatives.

From Monday 28th June, the following new developments will be pushed out to all users:

Location Intelligence – the app now uses location intelligence to identify the alerts and documentation that is most relevant to the location of works. For example, this means that if a user is working in Wales the alerts and documentation will be prioritised where it is applicable to Wales.

A short journey across the Severn Bridge and they will be updated to England ‘Setting up site’ tool – as the app is designed for easy and quick access to vital safety information on small screens, the way that information is presented needs to simple.  The ‘setting up site’ tool allows users to identify their site with filters to set up sites safely National & Regional HAUC(UK) links – the links to relevant websites are now available on the homepage of the app, enabling users to access the relevant guidance for their area easily and from one place.

Feedback tool – HAUC(UK) wants to learn from users so that the app can continue to be developed with users needs at the forefront.  The app now has a feedback tool enabling users to directly interact with HAUC(UK) and provide feedback on current developments and on what would make the app even more valuable in the future.

The HAUC(UK) App has been developed with generous support from the TfL Lane Rental Fund and supported by GeoPlace.

This new release is the first of many. HAUC(UK) will continuously develop the app to make sure it meets the needs of its users through a series of planned releases over the next few months including additional activity checklists, increased provision of guidance documentation from industry experts, information on upcoming events and the addition of the app to Google play stores.

Longer term HAUC(UK) will build on location intelligence, increasing awareness of what might be around or at sites, introducing more two-way communication to aid the sharing of information for safer works that don’t hamper the travelling public whilst also continuing to maintain the essential services that the utility companies and highway authorities provide.

To download the app onto your Apple or Android device, visit https://app.hauc-uk.org.uk and follow the simple instructions.

See the HAUC(UK) app video at https://vimeo.com/490805838