Working Alone or in Isolation


It is encouraged that staff should work in teams or minimally with another worker in a buddy system.  It is inevitable that during the course of performing duties on behalf of or related to the University, there are occasions that would necessitate workers to be working alone or in isolation.  Under these conditions, workers will benefit by regularly having their well being monitored at predetermined intervals in the event a quick response and assistance is required.


Working Alone or in Isolation


All individuals who are assigned to work alone or in isolation (situations where assistance would not be readily available to the worker) and whose well-being may be compromised by factors such as health (ie: unexpected heart attack), hazard exposure (ie: chemical burn, toxic gas release, microbial exposure) and/or physical trauma (ie: result of a slip and fall being knocked unconscious, injuries from machinery).

Prior to initiating working alone or in isolation, the supervisor (in consultation with the worker(s)) must perform a detailed risk assessment, control hazards and ensure well-being checks are in place.

Risk Assessment

Supervisors must review historical data of injuries and incidents and conduct a detail risk assessment in consultation with the worker(s).Risk Assessment for Working Alone form can be found here.

Hazard Control

The supervisor must ensure that any hazards identified through the risk assessment are eliminated or minimized as much as practicable.

Well-Being Checks & the WorkAlone App Feature

The supervisor must develop and implement a written procedure for checking the well-being of a worker who is assigned to work alone or in isolation. This procedure must include the time intervals between checks and the procedure to follow in case the worker cannot be contacted. An end of work shift check must be completed.

In order to simplify and ensure consistency for well-being checks, UBC has built a WorkAlone feature into the UBC O Safe App. The WorkAlone feature is a convenient tool and offers a robust system that would allow individuals to regularly check in with their check-in designate to indicate their safety and where required, trigger an escalation to locate the individual’s whereabouts if a well-being check is missed.