Safety ... at home, too
When working from home, it is just as important for your teleworkers to work safely. When working from home systematically, they can have a risk analysis of their home workstation performed. The internal prevention service can check the teleworker's workstation for health and safety. The internal prevention service's visit must be announced in advance and your teleworker has to have agreed to it. Your teleworker can also request an inspection visit from the internal service. IDEWE's prevention advisers can also carry out this type of workplace visit.
Accidents at work
What does the legislation say about accidents at work? Accidents at work are regulated by law in the Belgian Occupational Accidents Act. Has your teleworker had an accident? If so, it is assumed that unless proven otherwise, the accident occurred during the execution of the employment contract:
- At the location determined in writing.
- During the period of the day determined in writing.
If there are no written agreements about the teleworking location and hours (as with occasional teleworking), the law of 21 December 2018 incorporates two assumptions:
- The assumption of an accident at work for the place(s) of residence or for the place(s) where the teleworking is usually carried out.
- The assumption of an accident at work during the hours your teleworker would have been working if they had been on the employer's premises.
Moreover, this legislation stipulates that accidents on the way to the childcare centre and on the way to the location where lunch is purchased are the equivalent to an accident on the way to and from work for a teleworker.
What should your teleworker do in the event of an accident at work while teleworking? Provide them with the following information:
• Notify the employer as soon as possible. • Have a doctor take care of the injury as soon as possible and have them complete the medical certificate of initial determination. • Write a report detailing the accident and provide the employer with all the information required to complete the report. Your teleworker can always ask for advice on prevention and the necessary measures from the prevention adviser. Read the article for more information: https://www.idewe.be/-/arbeidsongeval-telewerk (article only available in Dutch and French)
Ensure your own safety
How can your teleworkers ensure their own safety? Some tips:
- Make sure all electrical installations (fuse box, condition of wires, etc.) are set up correctly.
- Make sure the electrical equipment is in good condition: be wary of portable lamps heating up and make sure electrical extension cords are not overloaded.
- Clear the work area to prevent falls.
- Install smoke detectors in the residence.