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#1 Posted : 18 December 2017 10:37:37(UTC)
Rank: New forum user

Hi There, wondered if anyone had come across a problem like this before? 

If a construction employee chooses to sleep in his own  campervan overnight (off site) rather than stay in accomodation does his employer have any reponsibilities regards his well being or maintaining the vehicle / inspections etc. 

A company I deal with have recently had a guy (who always sleeps in his campervan) block the vents during recent cold weather and ended up with carbon monoxide poisoning, luckily he is ok and admits he should have known better. He had recently bought a new carbon monoxide alarm which didnt trigger and was found to be faulty.

Im told he will continue to use his van next year and the company are looking to arrange a full inspection by a competant person to ensure his safety but wondered if anyone knew of legal responsibilities the company must meet seeing it's his own vehicle and wishes to sleep in it?  It's (in effect) out of work time, his own responsibility and insured corrcetly. 


#2 Posted : 18 December 2017 10:52:43(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user

Hi Simon

An employer's duty stops at the factory gates. It is not that uncommon for workers to use their own camper van, house boat, etc. However, they are solely responsible for the condition and safety of those premises.

If, as an employer you wish to go above and beyond what is expected - then all well and good.

thanks 2 users thanked RayRapp for this useful post.
simon1972 on 18/12/2017(UTC), webstar on 18/12/2017(UTC)
David Bannister  
#3 Posted : 18 December 2017 11:19:38(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
David Bannister

Simon, this situation is, in my opinion, no different to the employees who use hotels, whether that is a 5-star palace, a 2-star dump, a doss-house or Airbnb. Otherwise every employer would be having to inspect all hotels for H&S risks.

Advice and guidance can certainly be given and many employers have a clearly set out expenses policy but ultimately the choice rests with the individual for what they do when not working.

Auf Wiedersehen, Pet anyone?

thanks 1 user thanked David Bannister for this useful post.
simon1972 on 18/12/2017(UTC)
#4 Posted : 18 December 2017 12:10:46(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user

I would be wary of inspecting his camper van and getting involved.  Suppose the Company have it inspected which is totally outside their remit, they may then be assuming a level of responsibility for the employee and their welfare and the state of their camper van.  If the camper van is condemned, what are they going to do about the employee then. The Company will have effectively made him homeless ......

I should encourage them to leave well alone, it's not in their remit and they shouldn't interfere.

thanks 1 user thanked hilary for this useful post.
jwk on 18/12/2017(UTC)
#5 Posted : 18 December 2017 16:07:21(UTC)
Rank: Forum user

are they going to inspect all employees houses for potential carbon monoxide leaks as well?  The guy already admitted it was his fault for covering the vents and if he chooses to sleep in a van rather than a hotel etc then that is his choice i would say.  Is he staying in a van to fiddle his expenses?? haha

#6 Posted : 18 December 2017 16:32:07(UTC)
Rank: Forum user

Totally agree with what has been said.  It is not for the employer to offer or interferre in the individuals lodgings/vehicle.

There are alot of single "Self-employed" tradespeople who often sleep in vans/camper vans close to sites as that is the way they chose to live.  They float around from one-job to the next as it suits their circumstances.

Leave the vehicle to the MOT.

However as a word of caution - there was a recent case on Network Rail where a worker was sleeping in his car each night to avoid the very long commutes between home and work.  This led to a near miss incident as the individual was so tired from not getting proper rest.

So if you want to do the right thing - monitor his performance for signs of fatigue and maybe suggest a bit of down-time if required.

A Kurdziel  
#7 Posted : 19 December 2017 09:21:52(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
A Kurdziel

Is it on your site? We had a guy who got kicked out by his missus and he ended up living in campervan in one of our car parks. We had to move him on, due to H&S and security concerns.

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