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DORN Fatigue Series Part 4: Dr. Cassie Hilditch on Fatigue Management in Fire Departments and Commercial Aviation

Risk Management, Wellness |
Written by Kevin Lombardo

From warehouses and factories to the skies, fatigue remains a pressing issue for enterprises looking to keep accidents and injuries to a minimum and foster a productive culture at work. As we discussed in last week’s fatigue blog entry, fatigue can be damaging to a range of operations such as heavy industry, shipping, and any safety-critical industries where the stakes are high. Organizations that rely on the constant vigilance and continuous alertness of workers, such as fire departments and airlines, are at increased risk for incidents that stem from fatigue, largely because of the unique mental and physical demands placed on these employees. Between long hours, demanding tasks, consecutive nights of shift work, misuse of caffeine, and the mental stress of these high-pressure jobs, fatigue can take a serious toll, diminishing employee effectiveness and increasing the risk of dangerous incidents and injuries.

In this week’s segment, Dr. Cassie Hilditch leverages her considerable experience at NASA ARC through the SJSU Research Foundation to explore fatigue management solutions in emergency response departments and aviation companies. Summarizing published sleep health education programs, Dr. Hilditch discusses the most effective strategies for fatigue management in these high-pressure situations, emphasizing the importance of involving management in discussions and including union representatives in order to achieve optimal results. New tactics in employee engagement and training offer improvements in worker awareness of the fatigue problem, encouraging participants to reconsider how they prioritize their own sleep and general health.

 

Join us next time for the final installment of the DORN fatigue blog series, where we’ll explore general strategies for fighting fatigue and cutting costs from injuries and lost productivity.

Missed Part 1 of our Fatigue Series ? Click here.

Missed Part 2 of our Fatigue Series ? Click here.

Missed Part 3 of our Fatigue Series ? Click here.

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About the Author

Kevin Lombardo

CEO & President at DORN Companies
Kevin is Senior Executive and widely recognized thought leader in workers’ compensation and Total Worker Wellness with a focus on workplace injury prevention and on-site innovative therapy solutions.
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