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Fatigue Awareness for Transit Operations Transportation Disadvantaged Conference Amber B. Reep Center for Urban Transportation Research, University of.

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Presentation on theme: "Fatigue Awareness for Transit Operations Transportation Disadvantaged Conference Amber B. Reep Center for Urban Transportation Research, University of."— Presentation transcript:

1 Fatigue Awareness for Transit Operations Transportation Disadvantaged Conference Amber B. Reep Center for Urban Transportation Research, University of South Florida

2 Funded by the Florida Department of Transportation’s Florida Transit Training & Technical Assistance Program (RTAP)

3 Course Overview What is Fatigue Factors that Affect Fatigue Signs and Symptoms Types of Fatigue Driving Affects on Sleep Deprivation Incidents Related to Sleep Disruption Strategies to Maintain Alertness

4 How many hours of sleep did you get last night? A.8 or more hours B.7 hours C.6 hours D.Less then 5 hours

5 Why Should We Care about Fatigue? 33% of all drivers have fallen asleep at the wheel of something during their lifetime 56% of shift workers have fallen asleep on the job 55% of adults stated they experienced daytime drowsiness

6 The Human Toll 100,000 fatigue related collisions per year 1,544 fatigue related deaths per year Imagine: –A Boeing 727 crash every six weeks –Titanic sinking once a year –The World Trade Centers being destroyed every two years

7 What is Fatigue? Fatigue is a complex state characterized by a lack of alertness and reduced mental and physical performance, often accompanied by drowsiness Misconception: Fatigue is not just falling asleep

8 Fatigue Signs and Symptoms Forgetfulness Poor communication Impaired decision- making skills Lack of alertness Nodding off Slow reaction time Microsleep Withdrawn Depressed Moody Quick to anger No sense of humor Lack of interest Always tired

9 Factors That Affect Fatigue Sleep loss and/or disturbed sleep Disrupted biological clock Excessive physical activity Excessive mental or cognitive work Monotony or familiarity Quality & quantity of sleep

10 Factors That Affect Fatigue (cont’d) Continuous hours of being awake Illness Time of day/circadian effects Sleep disorders Environmental conditions (hot or cold) Nutrition

11 Factors That Affect Fatigue (cont’d) Physical fitness Drugs Health Age

12 Physical Fatigue A decrease in physical performance A feeling of muscle discomfort Lack of energy

13 Mental Fatigue Tired and drowsy due to loss of sleep Loss of concentration and/or alertness Diminished levels of creativity and logic

14 Accumulating a Sleep Debt Sleep loss is cumulative and builds a debt Most people get 1 to 1.5 hours less sleep per night than they need People whose sleep was restricted to 4 to 5 hours per night for one week needed two full nights sleep to recover vigilance, performance, and normal mood How do you get out of sleep debt? SLEEP

15 Circadian Rhythms Circadian rhythms are important in determining the sleeping and feeding patterns of all animals. Patterns of: core body temperature, brain wave activity, hormone production, cell regeneration and other biological activities linked to this daily cycle.sleepingbrain wave hormone –melatonin secretion by the pineal gland and –core body temperature.

16 Overview of biological circadian clock in humans. This diagram depicts the circadian patterns typical of someone who rises early in morning, eats lunch around noon, and sleeps at night (10 p.m.). Although circadian rhythms tend to be synchronized with cycles of light and dark, other factors - such as ambient temperature, meal times, napping schedule and duration, stress and exercise - can influence the timing as well.

17 What causes circadian disruptions? Shift work Irregular schedules Emergencies Illness Children Storms Telephone Restless Spouse

18 Biological and Social Effects on Shift Workers 60 to 80% affected by chronic sleep problems 4 to 5 times more likely to have stomach disorders 80% affected by chronic fatigue

19 Biological and Social Effects on Shift Workers (cont’d) 5 to 15 times more likely to suffer from mood swings and depression Divorce and spousal abuse rates higher Drug and alcohol abuse rates higher

20 Driving Drowsy Affects Performance Like Driving Drunk 19 hours without sleep is similar to a BAC of.05% 24 hours without sleep is similar to BAC of.10% Percent (%)

21 Who’s At Risk? People with lack of sleep Driving patterns –Midnight till 0600 am –Mid-afternoon –Many miles –Many hours –Monotony

22 Incidents Related to Sleep Disruption Chernobyl1:23 am Bhopal12:40 am Three Mile Island4:00 am Exxon Valdez12:04 am Most single vehicle3-5 am truck accidents

23 Incidents Related to Sleep Disruption (cont’d) Most mistakes by omission3-5 am –Surgeon –Nurses –Postal Works –Telephone Operators –Railroad Employees

24 Who Pays the Costs? Insurance Companies Families Friends The Company

25 Counter Measures Create an optimal sleep environment –Pillow and Mattress –Bedroom Location –Cool room –Family Ground rules –NO LIGHT –Quite –White noise –Routine Strategic naps Proper nutrition and exercise Prepare for schedule changes Readjust your body clock

26 Supervising Employees Do you really notice the operators? Do you talk to them? Could you send a fatigued operator home?

27 Strategies to Maintain Alertness Drive defensively Eat something light on your layover Physical discomfort –Heat –Cold –Uncomfortable seat Physical fitness Rumble strips

28 Be Proactive Maintain/encourage healthy life style Compensate and be aware of shift changes Understand your bodies sleep needs Maintain your sleep environment –Minimize light, disruptive sounds, etc.

29 Questions? The Transportation Safety Institute (TSI) developed a course that offers more information and training about Fatigue Awareness


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