Keeping employees safe is a must in every workplace. This is why the Occupational Safety and Health Administration was created – to ensure that employers keep their workers safe. However, some jobs require additional measures due to the uniqueness of their tasks. This is where the concern for lone worker safety comes in.
What is Lone Worker Safety?
As the name suggests, lone worker safety aims to protect individuals who work alone. This is a special aspect of workplace safety that addresses the unique nature of working alone. It covers all employees who have to work in a separate place from their colleagues. May it be in a different room inside the facility or an entirely different location.
The idea behind lone worker safety is that some workplace safety measures might not apply to lots of solo workers. Without any colleague around who can watch one’s back from potential harm, employees in this line of work are often left to fend for themselves when faced with various challenges. The right measures can help mitigate major issues which can then keep solo workers in good shape and capable of performing their tasks.
What are the Common Risks for Lone Workers?
To better define lone worker safety, it’s important to know the dangers that it addresses. Working alone can be riskier than working under supervision. With someone else around, you can count on someone else’s assistance when a challenge arises. The safety standards inside a workplace also help reduce hazards and accidents.
Aside from this, the specific tasks of lone workers also pose potential threats to their safety. Inexperienced workers who work without supervision are highly likely to make mistakes that can put them in harm’s way. Private healthcare providers and social workers can also experience dangerous situations while with patients or clients. Simply put, if there’s a threat in a line of work, the risks increase if an employee has to work alone.
How Lone Workers can Ensure Their Safety
While employers are legally obligated to put safety measures in place to prevent any kind of harm falling on their lone workers, employees should also participate actively in the process. Knowing what they should and shouldn’t do to stay safe will help them survive their day to day tasks without a hitch.
If you’re a solo worker, what can you do to protect yourself from the risks that comes with your job? Here are a few that you should keep in mind:
1. Familiarize yourself with the risks that come with the job and learn how to prevent, counter, and address them.
If you’re diving into a specific field of work, it’s highly likely that you already know its ins and outs. However, if you’re going to do it alone, you might want to be prepared for what the universe might throw at you.
While your education and training can help you do what you’re supposed to do, you should also know how to remedy situations when something goes wrong. You should also try to get to know possible scenarios that can cause harm while you try to complete your tasks.
2. Make sure to put your health and safety first.
Sometimes, you can be too intent on getting your job done that you might be neglecting your health and safety over it. Do not do this as a solo worker. When you overextend yourself or half-bake your performance, you might also put yourself at risk. Knowing when to stop to ask for help is a great way to ensure your personal safety as a worker.
3. Take advantage of the available technologies that can help boost lone worker safety.
With lone worker safety becoming a pressing matter in today’s professional environment, it’s not surprising that people have come up with technologies that can help address various concerns related to it. Getting acquainted with these and using them might just be the very thing you need to ensure your safety.