Today's News

Extended-hours ops: Are workers getting proper rest?

Just how productive is it to work into the wee hours? For Australia’s Members of Parliament, 14-hour shifts ending at the break of dawn, followed by as little as four hour’s rest before starting again, have prompted some Members to bring blankets and pajamas to work and to fall asleep on their benches, according to News Interactive.

Members from both sides of the bench call it “madness,” to debate important legislative issues while bleary-eyed and grumpy. However, with a few more sitting weeks and a long backlog of issues, more late nights are likely.

This story corresponds to an all-too-familiar issue in extended-hours operations: working during the low point in a daily physiological cycle of fluctuating alertness levels, when errors are substantially more likely. It’s no coincidence that the fatal accidents in Bhopal, Chernobyl and Three-Mile Island all occurred between 1:00 a.m. and 4:00 a.m. Moreover, research from Circadian Technologies shows that certain levels of sleep deprivation have the same effect on alertness as alcohol intoxication.

Extended-hours managers have an obligation to examine whether current shift scheduling practices are setting them up to incur excess costs, risks and liabilities, especially in safety-critical environments, reports Circadian.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to ISHN.

You must login or register in order to post a comment.



Image Galleries

Scenes from the World of Safety

Sights, signs & symbols from the National Safety Congress & Expo held in San Diego, CA, September 15-18

4/21/15 2:00 pm EDT

The Safety Selfie: It’s time to take a “snap shot” of your safety program and contemplate what others see

We all know perception is reality and that people perceive things differently. As a safety manager, your perception of your safety program almost certainly differs from that of your workers and your managers. We will use our “Safety Selfies” to expose weaknesses, real and perceived, and to talk about how best to make improvements.

ISHN Magazine


2015 May

In this month's issue of ISHN, check out articles about heat protection, radiation in the workplace, and welding fumes

Table Of Contents Subscribe


M:\General Shared\__AEC Store Katie Z\AEC Store\Images\ISHN\safetyfourth.jpg
Safety Engineering, 4th Edition

A practical, solutions-driven reference, Safety Engineering, 4th edition, has been completely revised and updated to reflect many of today’s issues in safety.

More Products

For Distributors Only - January 2015



For Distributors Only is ISHN's niche brand standard-sized magazine supplement aimed at an audience of 2,000 U.S. distributors that sell safety products. Circulation only goes to distributors. 



Facebook logo Twitter YouTubeLinkedIn Google + icon

ishn infographics

2012 US workplace deathsCheck out ISHN's new Infographic page! Learn more about worker safety through these interactive images. CLICK HERE to view the page.