Who are lone workers?
Lone workers are those who work by themselves without close or direct supervision. Anybody who works alone, including contractors, self-employed people and employee, is classed as a lone worker.
Lone workers include:
- people in fixed establishments where only one person works on the premises, e.g. in small workshops, kiosks, petrol stations, shops and home-workers
- people work separately from others, e.g. in factories, warehouses, some research and training establishments, leisure centres or fairgrounds
- people who work outside normal hours, e.g. cleaners, security, special production, maintenance or repair staff, etc.
- people who work away from their fixed base, e.g. on construction, plant installation, maintenance and cleaning work, electrical repairs, lift repairs, painting and decorating, vehicle recovery, etc.
- agricultural and forestry workers
- service workers, e.g. rent collectors, postal staff, social workers, home helpers, district nurses, pest control workers, drivers, engineers, architects, estate agents, sales representatives and similar professionals visiting domestic and commercial premises.
If you are working out of sight of another work colleague you are a lone worker!
Hazards that lone workers may encounter include:
- accidents or emergencies arising out of the work, including inadequate provision of first aid
- sudden illnesses
- inadequate provision of rest, hygiene and welfare facilities
- physical violence from members of the public and/or intruders
Three broad groups of workers whose activities involve a large percentage of their working time operating in situations without the benefit of interaction with other workers or without supervision are those:
- Working alone on site
- Working away from base
- Homeworkers (including “outworkers”)
It is should also be noted that many of the problems of lone working could also apply to pairs of workers who work in isolated areas or potential high risk working environments. Using the GPS Geo Guard will always give you the quickest response with evidential and analytical data even when working in teams.
|Taxi Drivers||Abusive customers, road rage, violence, robbery, road accidents|
|Social workers, institution staff, community workers||Abusive/violent patients/clients/relatives, manual handling (lifting) injuries|
|Electrical/Maintenance workers||Electric shocks, trips, cuts, falls, accidents, confined spaces|
|Emergency services, security workers||Abuse, violence, robbery, traffic hazards, accidents, biological hazards, falls, burns, toxic exposures|
|Farm/forestry/horticultural workers||Animal attacks, weather, machinery accidents, chemicals, falling trees|
|Home help, care assistants, cleaners||Falls, injury, lifting, injuries from garbage handling, infections, needle sticks, chemicals, violence, robbery|
|Lab workers||Chemical over-exposure, biological agents, physical hazards, fires|
|Meter readers, delivery, postal workers||Animal attacks, abusive customers, violence, robbery, accidents|
|Nursing staff||Manual handling injuries, abusive/violent patients, drug handling, robbery, violence|
|Parking attendants||Robbery, violence, abuse, vehicle fumes|
|Shop/service sector workers||Robbery, violence, abuse, manual handling injuries|
|Public workers||Confined spaces, toxic gases, biohazards, slips and falls|
|Transport workers||Abuse, road rage, violence, robbery, road accidents, falling asleep at the wheel, breakdowns/running out of fuel/getting bogged in isolated areas (tragically, several drivers have died as a result)|
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