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February 2016 Safety Tip of the Month: Working Alone

Members often come to us with their concerns about working alone in their stores. This month we’ll take the opportunity to review the procedures for working alone and offer ideas to help you feel safe in these situations.                                                                                            

Everyone should be familiar with the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) regulations on “Working Alone” (Sections 4.20, 4.21 and 4.22). Those provisions require:

  • the employer to identify, eliminate and/or minimize the risks and/or hazards associated with working alone;
  • the employer to develop and implement a written procedure for checking the well-being of a worker assigned to work alone at regular intervals, including checking in with the worker at shift end;
  • the procedure for checking a worker's well-being to be developed in consultation with the Joint OHS Committee.

Familiarize yourself with the LDB’s policies and procedures for working alone. You can find these on the intranet. Review these with your manager/regional manager and make sure you follow the process.

Some stores have a “panic button” that members can wear on their person. If you work in a store that requires you to work alone, and you think that the button will help you feel safer and more at ease, please talk with your Regional Manager or the LDB Safety officer Jason Dallavalle. Feel free to contact your Component 5 OHS Committee if you have any questions. The committee’s contact info can be found on the Component 5 section of the BCGEU website.

Members being familiar with the policy and following the procedures ensures everyone’s safety. 

Along with formal procedures, LDB members have provided the following suggestions for working alone:

  1. When working late, be sure to move your vehicle closer to the door before the last person leaves. 
  2. Remember to sign off the till before leaving to do other work. 
  3. Be aware of the people entering the store or in close proximity (parking lot or out back)
  4. Carry the cordless phone with you when working in other areas of the store.
  5. Get warehouse work done while another employee is there so you can focus on the sales floor when you are alone.
  6. Before leaving make sure there is no one hanging around outside.
  7. Make sure you have minimal cash in the register at all times.

Together we can help keep each other safe. If you have any other suggestions to share please email or call us and we will add your suggestion to the list.

Stay safe when working alone. Remember, your safety is more important than the product we carry.

The Component 5 OHS committee is having a store committee meeting (with employer) in early March and if you would like us to raise an issue that is concerning to you please let us know and we will add it to the agenda.


These safety tips are brought to you by your Component 5 OHS Committee