Saturday, August 25, 2018

The Loneliness of The Lone Worker, Their Security & Your Corporate Liability


The Loneliness of The Lone Worker, 
Their Security & Your Corporate Liability

Real Estate Agents attacked!

This is not the year of feeling safe or comfortable regarding your personal security.  Physical, cyber or even family wise.  Physical attacks have increased on the streets and behind closed doors.  Domestic violence has surged and rape, including sexual assault, is off the charts.  All demand reviewing and changing society, if that were possible, in this world of anti-social communications. Believe it or not, there are answers and simple solutions.

What about the lone worker?

The Lone Worker is one who works by themselves without close or direct supervision. In fact anybody who works alone, including contractors, self-employed people and employee, are classed as a lone worker.

Lone workers include:

  • people in fixed establishments where only one person works on the premises, e.g. in small workshops, kiosks, gas stations, shops and home-workers
  • people work separately from others, e.g. in factories, warehouses, some research and training establishments, leisure centers
  • people who work outside normal hours, e.g. office cleaners, security guards, special production, maintenance or repair staff, etc.
  • people who work working away from their fixed base, e.g.  on construction, plant installation, maintenance and cleaning work, electrical repairs, elevator repairs, painting and decorating, vehicle recovery/tow truck drivers, etc.
  • agricultural and forestry workers
  • service workers, e.g. rent collectors, postal staff, social workers, children's and families services investigators, medical home helps, district nurses, pest control workers, truck and delivery drivers, engineers, architects, real estate agents, sales representatives and similar professionals visiting domestic and commercial premises.
There are many more and include those that visit homes of the disabled, mentally ill and of course the unknown.  Do we really know what we are sending our lone workers into?  Have you a prepared plan for these increased eventualities?

It is an employers compliance with Duty of Care and Corporate Governance to take the steps to evaluate for all parties, that includes the parties being visited too!  Liability is always the issue in this litigious society of ours.  Due Diligence is not just a phrase, it is there to set an example and be followed.  Negating your obligations regarding security and safety of all concerned, is not to be taken lightly, especially in the eventual court of law.

Risk Assessment shows us that we are placing our employees and ourselves in many vulnerable situations and barely escaping by the skin of our teeth.

Just what are you employer/corporate obligations and responsibilities?

The employer/corporation holds the main responsibility for protecting the safety and health of all lone workers. Nonetheless, lone workers themselves have a responsibility to help their employer fulfill this duty, and so they must:
  • Take reasonable care to look after their own safety and health
  • Safeguard the safety and health of other people affected by their work
  • Co-operate with their employer’s safety and health procedures
  • Use tools and other equipment properly, in accordance with any relevant safety instructions and training they have been given
  • Not misuse equipment provided for their safety and health
  • Report all accidents, injuries, near-misses and other dangerous occurrences

It is all well and good talking about it, it is required and demanded that actions on all sides are established and adhered to.

So what control measures should be implemented to minimize the risk to lone workers?

The risk assessment will prescribe control measures to be implemented in order to eliminate/minimize the identified risks. Control measures may include:

  • communication is very important: mobile phone, telephone, radio or secure unseen alarm, location and audio solution
  • controlled periodical check-in
  • automatic warning devices, e.g. panic alarms, no movement alarms, automatic distress message systems, i.e. pre recorded message sent if not actively cancelled by operative, etc.
  • instruction and training in proper procedures, e.g. code words for potentially violent situations  when combined with mobile phone communication.
  • use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) 
  • health surveillance
  • first-aid kits and training
  • implementing Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’s)
  • locking and securing place of work
  • implementing correct incident reporting procedures
  • provision of counselling

What provisions should be in place for lone workers in the case of an emergency?
  • Lone workers should be capable of responding correctly to emergencies. Risk assessment should identify foreseeable events. 
  • Emergency procedures should be established and employees trained in them.
  • Information about emergency procedures and danger areas should be given to lone workers who visit your premises.
  • Lone workers should have access to adequate first-aid facilities and mobile workers should carry a first-aid kit suitable for treating minor injuries.
  • Occasionally, the risk assessment may indicate that lone workers need training in first aid.

Then there is the visual record, the Objective Eyewitness, the Body Worn Camera which will record audio and video in the highest quality.  It is for the protection of all parties.  Effective and reduces incidents in the highest percentile.

The Lone Worker is more vulnerable than you think and protective measures must be taken!

telephone: US: (515) 200-7068 or UK: 0207 1019247

copyright 2018

Friday, August 24, 2018

Rule Britannia...

Rule Britania...

We Brits like to give the impression of having a stiff upper lip – but say the wrong thing to us and we’ll be utterly bloody peeved.

So, if you ever come to our Isles or meet one of us abroad, here’s a rough outline of what you should never say to us.

Have you met the Queen/Kate Middleton/Stephen Fry?

There are a lot of us living on this glorious island – and we spend most of it with our heads down. The chances are, we may have walked past a national treasure or a member of the royal family at some point, but we were too busy inspecting a receipt or scowling at a dawdler to notice.

What did you do for the royal wedding?

You may be surprised to learn that there are many people who simply don't care about the royals. She may be on our money, but the Queen isn’t our favorite topic of conversation. And no, we don’t know the national anthem.

Why is your food so bad?

One thing you need to learn about the British is that we love relishing in the bad and miserable. We’ve grown up with rainy days, package holidays and, yes, soggy chips, limp pasties, greasy takeaways and grey sandwiches. What might look bad to you gives us unparalleled, nostalgic comfort.

Why do you eat beans in a morning… on toast?

Stay well away from our breakfast habits.

Why do you love queuing?

We have no idea where this stereotype comes from, and spend our whole time in queues wondering what the alternative is. We hate queuing, and we look miserable doing it - we just love order more than we hate queuing.

So, how's Brexit going?

Brexit talk is banned.

Why do you drink so much tea?
If you spend a day in Britain, you'll know exactly why. You'll soon see the cold weather, early mornings and the slow tedium of a life that can only be disrupted by a trip to watch water boil in a kettle - and understand exactly why we relentlessly fill our empty vessels with tea.

Why are you all so polite to each other?
We're as rude as anyone else, we just keep all the rage bottled up until football matches, Love Island finals and other unifying moments of national outcry.

Why do you have so many words to say goodbye?

It's considered rude not to end a conversation with, "bye, cheerio, take care, cheers, thanks".

Why is everyone obsessed with Mary Berry?

In our angry, politically charged times, Mary Berry is the only person we all love. You don't need to understand it, but you need to not question it. Stick on an episode of the Great British Bake Off and find out for yourself.

But you said you were fine.

Fine never means we're okay. You'll learn.

Why don't you speak any other languages?

Us Brits are unique in that we feel like we don't need to learn any other languages. It is rather bizarre. There are also those who think speaking our mother tongue louder and slower when we're on holiday works when it really doesn't.


This word is banned.

Is a Jaffa Cake a cake or a biscuit?

Just, don't.

Thank you the Independent newspaper