What Does Lone Worker Mean?
A lone worker is a person who works alone in a fixed facility without any supervision. A lone worker includes but is not limited to contractors, traveling workers, repairers, and workers in construction or utilities.
This category also includes workers who work separately from their colleagues in factories, warehouses, laboratories, or any other kind of establishment.
Safeopedia Explains Lone Worker
Employers are responsible to take care of their employees regardless of whether they work in a group or alone. All employers can strengthen the safety of lone workers by enhancing communication, securing and adhering to policies, and using technology to track their presence.
A lone worker can stumble across hazards such as accidents, emergencies, illness, physical violence, and attacks by intruders. Employers must complete a risk assessment before asking a worker to work alone. If any worker is found incapable of working alone safely, arrangements should be made for providing assistance. If any lone worker is sent to work under another employer, the original employer should inform the other regarding risks and necessary safety measures to be taken.
Lone workers are also responsible for cooperating with their employers. They should take care of themselves and must not take their safety lightly. They should use tools in the recommended way and abide by all training instructions. A lone worker should inform his or her employer immediately upon facing an accident or any kind of injury or threat.
The best way to mitigate the risks is to communicate with the worker, ask him or her to use personal protective equipment (PPE), provide training, enhance security of the workplace, provide a first-aid kit, and implement reporting devices if mobiles fail to work.
If a lone worker is working in a remote area, an employer must consider the duration of work completion, frequency of times the worker will report to the employer, availability of transport, safety during traveling, and the availability of means for rest, food, refreshment, medical facilities, and emergency services.