Lone Working

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A huge number of jobs can require people to be

We live in a 24-7 world. Care workers, shopworkers, maintenance workers, most jobs, can require people to be left alone and isolated. It can be dangerous. Workers have been murdered. Health, postal, emergency and shopworkers are frequently attacked. Injured workers have been undiscovered for hours. The law should protect you ... make sure it does.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) says lone workers are "those who work by themselves without close or direct supervision." Three broad groups of workers are at risk, those: Working alone on site; working away from base; and homeworkers.

There are no specific legal duties on employers in relation to lone working, however the general duty of employers to maintain safe working arrangements under the 1974 Health and Safety at Work Act applies.

HSE advises employers that they have a legal duty to notify and consult with safety representatives about the jobs of employees who work alone.


HSE Working Alone: Health and safety guidance on the risks of lone working

TUC Guidance for Safety Representatives: [ webpage], [ pdf]

Hazards lone working factsheet

UNISON: Working Alone - safety reps guide

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