Healthcare Health and Safety Level 2 (VTQ)

55 videos, 2 hours and 36 minutes

Course Content

Driving and Travelling Alone

Video 29 of 55
3 min 50 sec
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In the course of work, staff may have to make journeys in their car alone. There have been a number of incidents nationally in the recent past, which have highlighted the potential dangers and have raised awareness of how vulnerable each one of us could be despite the care we take.

However, the risk of such an incident is extremely low. The lone worker should be given practical guidance on how to reduce the possible dangers that may occur whilst driving alone.

If you are in this situation good practice includes:-

  • Always keep windows closed and doors locked when driving alone, particularly at night and in isolated areas
  • Do not give lifts to strangers, for example, a hitchhiker, or accept lifts from a stranger, if you break down or have an accident. You should be aware of what to do if you find yourself in this situation
  • If you see an incident or someone tries to flag you down, you should be fully aware of the dangers of trying to help. Think first. Is it genuine? It may be safer and also more helpful and practicable to report what you have seen at the next telephone box or garage.
  • If you believe that you are being followed you should keep calm and continue driving to a busy place, for example, a garage or a police station, where help could be available.
  • If necessary you can draw attention to yourself by sounding your horn.
  • If someone is around your vehicle, it is good practice to ignore them and avoid eye contact.
  • If a car pulls in front of you causes you to stop it is good practice NEVER to turn off your engine. If the driver or passenger approaches you, you should reverse as far as is safely possible and ensure doors and windows are locked. If necessary draw attention to yourself by sounding the horn.
  • When parking in daylight always try to imagine what the place would be like at night.  
  • When parking at night, park near a streetlight and as close to the place you need to be as possible.
  • Always lock away any valuables out of sight in the boot. Women drivers should not leave spare shoes visible as this can indicate your gender and make you more of a target.
  • Never leave the car unlocked or the ignition key in it when it is unattended.
  • When returning to the car, always have the door key ready. It is better not to stand by the car searching for the key.

Staff who drive on their own should be aware of the potential of accidents. Driving for long periods can cause you to have an accident. Travelling on foot or public transport, you need to think ahead and be alert and aware of your surroundings. Keep to busy, well-lit roads and avoid poorly lit or quiet underpass.  Avoid carrying valuables, for example, excessive amounts of cash or expensive jewellery. When travelling on public transport always try to sit near the driver on a driver-only bus or stay downstairs.

If possible, wait for the public transport at a busy stop and one that is well lit, or a stop close to the area of activity - for example at a garage or a late opening shop.  Have the fare ready and keep it separate from other money or valuables you have on you.

Be very careful if you are on your phone, as this is distracting and you may not be aware of the risks around you and finally, try to avoid having hands full with heavy bags and always be aware of your surroundings.