The Mast and Tower Safety (MATS) Group Conference

6 Oct 2020

Leaders from some of the UK’s biggest technology giants are visiting Coventry’s Ricoh Arena to discuss how 5G is impacting workforces working at height, and infrastructure among other issues.

The Mast and Tower Safety (MATS) Group Conference is set to welcome around 300 visitors and more than 40 exhibitors on Tuesday 6 October – with MATS members such as Vodafone, EE, O2 and BT in attendance.

Stewart Mardle is the Chairman of MATS Group, which provides guidance to companies on up-to-date safety procedures when working at height on structures such as masts and towers, as well as radio frequency-related issues associated with broadcast and communications antennas.

He said: “The roll out of 5G will really gather pace towards the end of this year, as more mobile phone providers begin to roll out 5G mobile phones, so this year’s conference will have a big focus on how this will impact engineers out in the field.

“The speed of 5G will require the upgrade of existing cell towers in addition to the installation of additional ones, which is great for the industry, but with more powerful technology comes big changes to consider.

“We are so used to technology getting smaller, but in actual fact the cell towers are becoming heavier and bigger to accommodate increasing volumes of data at faster speeds.

“There are also some misconceptions flying around that the increase in cell towers could cause a risk to health, but we will have health professionals at the conference to allay fears around this, backed up by scientific evidence.

“The conference is also a great opportunity for industry professionals to gain insight into products of the future at our Dragons’ Den style innovation station, where industry professionals will be showcasing their inventions. This worked really well last year, with a tethering tool that prevented the user from dropping tools whilst working at height proving popular.

“For the first time, we’ll also have a thought-provoking session with a former health and safety inspector turned lawyer, who will act out a scenario where a company is being interviewed by the Health and Safety Executive after a major accident on-site.

“This interview scenario will be very rare for our visitors, but it gives the audience the chance to think about how they would answer the questions, and to consider if their own processes are robust enough.

“The conference continues to grow year-on-year – aided by the central location of Ricoh Arena - and we are looking forward to another successful year with some of the biggest communications companies in the country.”

For more information about the Mast and Tower Safety (MATS) Group Conference, visit www.matsgroup.info

About Ricoh Arena

Ricoh Arena is one of the UK’s most versatile venues for live sport, music, conferences and exhibitions, putting the Midlands on the map as a leading destination for events.

The venue boasts a 32,000-seater stadium bowl alongside the 6,000 square metre Ericsson Indoor Arena and 80 versatile suites for meetings. There is also an onsite 121-bedroom DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel and Grosvenor Casino.

The Coventry-based venue is within a two-hour car journey of 75 per cent of the UK, and is twenty minutes away from Birmingham Airport.