The Health and Safety Executive has revised its Working Alone leaflet to provide advice on the risks of lone working.
First released in 2013, the guidance has been refreshed and redesigned, and will be of interest to agents going out on valuations and viewings.
The leaflet provides guidance on how to keep lone workers healthy and safe. It is aimed at anyone who employs or engages lone workers, and at self-employed people who work alone.
It said employers have a duty to assess risks to lone workers and take steps to avoid or control risks where necessary.
- Being aware that some tasks may be too difficult or dangerous to be carried out by an unaccompanied worker.
- Where a lone worker is working at another employer’s workplace, informing that other employer of the risks and the required control measures.
- When a risk assessment shows it is not possible for the work to be conducted safely by a lone worker, addressing that risk by making arrangements to provide help or back-up.
Agents will remember the case of estate agent Suzy Lamplugh who met a man at a property in Fulham more than 30 years ago and was never seen again.
Lara Wilks Sloan of the Suzy Lamplugh Trust, said: “When Suzy went missing, it was in the days before smartphones, and the only clue her company had to her whereabouts was an entry in the diary.
“We know from the work we carry out with companies that things have changed since 1986 but we’ve carried out new research that indicates that 30 years on, safety in the housing sector is still a concern for estate agents and consumers too.”