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After-hours working

This page contains information on any work undertaken outside of office hours (after 5 pm to 8 am on weekdays, weekends and public holidays) on campus. After-hours work undertaken off-campus including fieldwork are excluded. For fieldwork safety guidelines, please refer to the Field Work Safety page.

Hazards of working after-hours

Working after-hours entails:

  1. Reduced availability of internal and external services, including Centre, Facilities Management, Building Operations, external emergency services, and UWA Safety, Health, and Wellbeing support in case of incidents, injuries, or emergencies.
  2. Having limited supervision might mean lack of guidance and support to staff and students, helping them navigate complex tasks or unfamiliar situations. This may lead communication breakdowns leading to delays in response.
  3. Fatigue which may affect a person’s ability to work safely as it is accompanied by poor judgment, slower reactions to events, and decreased skills.

Factors that may increase the risk after-hours

Several factors can elevate the risk associated with after-hours work, such as:

  • Duration of work.
  • Communication challenges.
  • Nature of the work involving cognitive and physical workload.
  • Pre-existing medical conditions.
  • Experience and training required for specific tasks.

Before after-hour work

Before commencing after-hours work, ensure the following preparations are in place:

  • Completion and communication of a thorough risk assessment.
  • Completion of Workplace Health and Safety (WHS) induction.
  • Up-to-date and communicated safe operational procedures (SOP) and instructions.
  • Permission obtained from your manager or supervisor.
  • Installation of the SafeZone app.
  • Checks on adequate coverage for the area where staff will work in .

Mitigating risks during after-hours work

  • Ensure you are fit for work.
  • Take reasonable care for yourself and others.
  • Adhere to all instructions and SOPs provided.
  • Understand the risk assessment before undertaking any tasks.
  • Work with a partner whenever possible.
  • Ensure building doors are securely closed and locked when entering or exiting.
  • Immediately report any security breaches or suspicious behaviour to University Security.
  • Report all incidents, hazards, and near misses through CAMMS.

Restricted high-risk work activities after hours

  • Handling toxic, explosive, or unstable chemicals or molten metals.
  • Using high-risk equipment such as forklifts, saws, cranes, or hoists.
  • Performing high-risk tasks at heights, in confined spaces, or with naked flames.
  • Working in noisy environments (above 85 decibels) or extreme temperatures.
  • Any other work activity is restricted by risk assessment.
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