Working in teams as well as handling work individually are the two most common strengths employers look for in the workforce. With the growing trends of freelance work, lone working has become too much normalized. It is fine until and unless the workers have to work from the comfort of their home or office by using a laptop.
The problems start when workers have to go in the field alone and complete the assigned work. Lone working is quite common in the mining industry, chemical plants, repair and maintenance work, waste management plants, where the works do not use laptops but need to work manually. Numerous hazards are associated with this type of work which needs to be minimized.
Let’s dig into the details of this article to learn and explore the basic hazards associated with lone working.
Working alone in the field is nothing like working from the comfort of an air-conditioned room or office. A hundred times more hazards and risks are involved in the former, which often take the life of workers. The employers and authorities have the responsibility of ensuring a safe working atmosphere, even if it is in the field. It is only possible after acknowledging and fixing hazards.
Here are some of the major lone working hazards you need to fix on a priority basis in order to offer a safe and secure working experience to your employees.
The basic lone working hazard is that the worker can face some work accident or emergency. The machinery can stop working, break down and even fall. Hundreds of workers become disabled on the job when they try to fix a broken machine, and it suddenly starts working. Having a work partner can help the employees avoid potential accidents or even notify the authorities in time of need, instead of surrendering to accidents and emergencies.
The most common and unpredictable hazard of lone working is the sudden illness. Lone workers often work in remote areas too. When they start feeling sick out of the blue, they are often unable to find help around them. In most cases, the workers do not even get the chance to notify the authorities of their health condition and succumb to pain or sudden health issues. Therefore, maintaining regular contact with workers or even assigning teams for remote working is critical.
One of the basic hazards of lone working is that the workers have to go work in remote areas. It may seem as only a part of their work, but it involves numerous challenges. The lone workers may not have any conveyance and need to wait for hours. Even if they have one, it can break down on the way. Moreover, they might need manual support, a partner to discuss work issue and resolve it, and numerous such concerns. So, suitable arrangements should be made to make work easy.
One of the most unexpected hazards of lone working is public violence or the risk of intruders. In the case of remote work sites, where workers have to go alone for maintenance, repair, or any other task, they often fall victim to violence at the hands of the local population. It can happen due to some issues and concerns in work, heated arguments, or any other case. The solution is assigning teams for remote work and having proper security arrangements onboard.
Another critical lone working hazard that you need to resolve immediately is the outdated safety and work equipment. The lone workers depend heavily on the work and safety equipment. If it is outdated, they will not be able to complete their work on time. Moreover, it will also risk their life, specifically in the case of outdated gas detectors. So, make sure to keep the equipment which is updated and well maintained.
The last and growing concern of lone working is the higher risks of gas hazards. Many workers work alone in the maintenance and repair industry, agricultural sector, and plants, which often have to work with gases. In case there is a leakage or sudden explosion, the lone worker will not be able to manage the situation. In order to make work easy for them, you need to assign teams for such works. Moreover, you should invest in a gas detection system and train your workers to monitor gas hazards and fix them to avoid potential harm.
If yes, then you first need to make teams. After that, you need to ensure they have upgraded equipment. The third point is making sure they have gas detectors so they do not fall victim to poison due to gas leakage. Get in touch with professional safety equipment suppliers to get suitable equipment on board and make work easier for your labor or workforce.