Here are the acts and regulations found in the Northern Territories, related to lone working and work alone employees. We cover all the lone worker policy and legislation we have found for this area, specifically for the Northern Territories.
We were unable to find digital versions of either the Work Health and Safety Act or Work Health and Safety Regulations for the Northern Territories. However, Work Safe have created a guide for the Northern Territories government that is fantastic.
The comprehensive 34-page document from WorkSafe outlines the importance of the work environment, remote communications systems and procedures, risk prevention, emergency plans, vehicles, travel and much more.
The guide asks, ‘Who is considered a ‘lone worker’? Lone workers are considered those who work by themselves and/or work in the community with only limited support arrangements, which therefore expose them to risk by being isolated from the usual back-up support.
What if it is only once? This is the case whether they regularly work alone or are only occasionally alone and do not have access to immediate support from managers or other colleagues. The guide does not set down a minimum time that a worker has to be on their own for them to be considered ‘remote’ or ‘isolated’. Each situation should be assessed according to its circumstances, taking into account specific factors that may present a risk to the worker.
What should I be aware of as an employer? Although the terms ‘remote’ and ‘isolated’ fall under the same definition there are some key differences that PCBUs*, safety practitioners, managers, supervisors and workers should be aware of:
▪ Isolated work may involve work activities undertaken in an isolated area (geographical isolation), on or off site, either during or outside normal working hours (temporal isolation).
▪ Remote work may involve work activities undertaken at a location removed from an office environment where there are few people and where communications and travel are difficult. This may include land or sea activities within Australia or overseas. A worker may be considered remote or isolated even if other people may be close by. In some situations, a worker may be alone for a short period of time, while in other situations they may be on their own for days or weeks in a remote location. Workers may work remotely or in isolation if they:
▪ physically work alone, for example, at night in a laboratory
▪ work separately from others, for example, in a regional office building, work at home or engage in teleworking activities
▪ work outside normal working hours, for example, on call workers
▪ work shift work or night work, travel as part of work, travel long distances, for example, freight transport drivers
▪ work unsupervised, for example, teleworkers
▪ work in geographical isolation, for example, scientists or park rangers carrying out field work
▪ work on a reduced roster, for example, on public holidays
▪ work in isolation with members of the public, for example, health and community workers.
*a person/entity conducting a business or undertaking