Source : Pedro Ribeiro Simões
Fatigue is a risk to workers which can be overcome with a little effort and in the construction industry it is an issue that is of particular importance because workers engage in dangerous activities that can threaten their safety or the safety of those around them.
The main causes of fatigue in construction workers are working night shifts or long hours, broken shifts, lack of sleep or any disruption in the sleep cycle pattern, bad quality sleep, emotional or lifestyle issues.
Some of the methods suggested by authorities to manage fatigue include:
- Limiting over time work
- Drawing up rosters to allow workers to sleep for a continuous 8 hour period every 24 hour cycle.
- Make sure workers take regular breaks and rest
- Make sure that there is enough staff at any one time to meet the demands of the workplace, do not overload a few workers with the entire sites work.
- Minimise work that starts prior to 6am
- Ensure that workers are given sufficient time between shifts. Adults require approximately seven to eight continuous hours of daily sleep. One way of doing this would be giving workers two successive full days off within a seven day period, so workers can catch up on their night sleep.