It is often safe to work alone, however depending on the nature of the work there are various risks. The law requires employers to consider the risks and ensure precautions are taken before someone is aloud to work alone.
What should be in place?
Before someone can work alone, you should:
- Assessed the potential risks of working alone
- Consider the level of training they have for working alone
- Consider how you know what is happening and safe systems of work for staying in touch
What are some of the risks to consider?
Some of the areas you need to consider are:
- where they will be working
- safer handling while working alone
- accidents that could occur and how they would be dealt with
- how individuals will be travelling
- time of day they will be working
- risk of violence to individuals
- health suitability to working alone
What training may they need?
Your risk assessment will identify the training your employee will need, but some things to consider:
- Lone working training - looking at how to stay safe when working alone
- Dealing with aggression when alone
- Utilising equipment for lone working
What safe systems of work might I use for staying in contact?
There are many different ways of staying in contact, varying in level of support depending on the risks involved. Some options include:
- a person who will notice if someone does not return from a work activity
- a designated person to phone at different stages of the work activity
- call centres that monitor if employees have called in with set time frames
- 2-way radios with panic buttons
- tracker identification cards with panic buttons