Lone worker protection is a particular concern to many employers. This is especially relevant to resource extraction industries (mining, energy, forestry) along with trucking, surveying and home health care providers, where employees are at risk of accident or incident when working alone. What do you, as an employer, need to consider when implementing a system for lone worker protection?
You probably understand that as an employer you are likely required, by law or according to health and safety regulations, to implement a lone worker safety policy. Even if accidents or incidents occur outside of your business premises, when they transpire during the execution of your employees duties or, in some cases, during transit to a job site, you are accountable. In many cases, the remote worker is at higher risk and it’s up to you to assess and reduce those risks.
If your business employs workers who are not directly supervised and at risk of accident or injury you are required, by law in some jurisdictions and according to occupational health and safety regulations in others, to have a lone worker policy in place to protect them. It is the employer’s duty to assess risks to lone workers and take steps to avoid or manage the risks. Some companies ignore these obligations and should a worker suffer injury while on duty without lone worker monitoring in place, may face severe consequences.
Lone worker monitoring is the practice of monitoring workers who, due to their working conditions or the nature of their employment, may be out of sight or earshot of co-workers during the course or their workday. If no co-workers are nearby to offer assistance in an emergency, then a lone worker monitoring system should be in place.
Employees that benefit from a lone worker monitoring system include those in resource extraction (energy, mining, and forestry), trucking, environmental assessment, surveying, social work, maintenance, home-based health care providers and even certain retail workers.
The transport and logistics industry employs workers in a diverse range of occupations: truck drivers, courier and postal delivery drivers and warehouse workers, to name a few. Each of these occupations carries a relatively high risk of accident or injury, and it’s challenging for employers to find ways to keep staff safe on the job.
We all face stress on the job and when your workplace stress is not acknowledged and managed, it can lead to physical and emotional illness as well as reduced performance and productivity. How well you manage your workplace stress depends on how you are able (or unable!) to address it. Compounding the problem, if you work alone, without the security of co-workers to share the workload and watch your back, your stress levels may go through the roof!
Here are 5 tips for managing your workplace stress:
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The 2008 murder of realtor Lindsay Buziak while showing a property in Victoria, BC, Canada is a disturbing example of why you need to manage the safety of your lone workers. There are many sales industry professionals who may be at risk when working alone; realtors showing homes, car salespeople taking customers for a test drive, and all sorts of outside sales workers who travel to visit clients and prospects.
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Health and social care professionals met in London June 29-30 at the 2016 Health + Care Conference to learn about new ways to deliver healthcare and improve productivity in the delivery of health services. Advances in technology provide a multitude of new tools and integrated systems that can improve not only patient care, but also support the well-being and safety of health care workers.
What is a lone worker monitoring system and do you, as an employer, need one?
Workers in remote locations, at high risk job sites or providing services in private residences, face threats to their safety. What are a few things that you should consider when setting up a lone worker system to protect your employees?