Our December StaffSafe Hero

Lyam McGowan –  StaffSafe Hero December

Lyam McGowanLyam is an experienced member of our team in our support centre. Here, Lyam tells us how he was able to support convenience store staff in a distressing and potentially dangerous situation. Well done for using your experience and expertise to bring a quick and satisfactory conclusion to an incident.

Lyam says:

“When I received a call from a convenience store, it became apparent on CCTV that a fight had broken out inside involving around six young people. I read the warning script into the store to them through the two-way communication system, trying to get them to disperse whilst alerting the emergency services on a 999 call.

I was then concerned when I saw a staff member attempting to intervene and split up the fight. Although I could not see any weapons, we know from our experience that the use of weapons is becoming more prevalent in this type of situation and that the risk to safety is increasing all the time. So, I advised the staff member as quickly as possible to keep himself of harm’s way and that help, via the police, was on its way.

The police had advised me that they were travelling to the scene on an immediate response and this provided a reassurance to the store staff and other customers. As the incident was taking place, I was able to describe this to the police in real time, along with a detailed description of all those involved in the fight.

Thankfully, the police arrived on site very quickly, bringing the incident to an end and taking control of the situation.

This was a challenging situation where I was able to intervene, interact and assure. There was so much happening very quickly and it was very distressing and emotionally charged for the staff members and other customers. Yet I was able to quickly assess the scene. I was very relieved when the staff member took my advice to not get physically involved and to keep safe by keeping away from the incident. My experience and the CCTV proved invaluable here. Our priority is always safety.”