National Transportation Safety Board Chairman Deborah A.P. Hersman encouraged the sleep research and healthcare community to continue their efforts to educate transportation policy makers of the dangers of fatigue in all modes of transportation, according to a NTSB press release.
Speaking before the annual conference of the National Sleep
Foundation in Washington, D.C., Chairman Hersman remarked
that fatigue has been a concern for the Board since the
creation of the agency in 1967 and it has been an issue on
the Board's Most Wanted List of Transportation Safety
Improvements since the list was established in 1990.
"The work of the National Sleep Foundation and other
organizations and individuals is critical to improving
transportation safety policy," said Chairman Hersman. "The
NTSB is interested and willing to partner with you in
developing a greater awareness of fatigue."
Hersman highlighted a number of accident investigations
across all transportation modes that included fatigue as the
probable cause or a contributing factor to accidents. As a
result, the Board has made safety recommendations that range
from deploying fatigue detection systems to reduce the
occurrence of accidents to installing electronic on-board
recorders that collect and maintain hours of service data on
"We can't always prove fatigue as a cause of an accident,
but the frequency with which we now routinely document the
presence of fatigue-related factors in transportation
operations is alarming," Hersman stated.
Hersman remarked that while there are still no definitive
tools to conclusively identify the degree to which a person
is fatigued, the major challenge is to ensure that all those
in transportation report to work rested and fit for duty â€” for their own safety and for the safety of those they are
The complete text of Chairman Hersman's speech may be
obtained on the Board's website at: