Fatigue in the Workplace

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Baltimore Workers’ Compensation Lawyers weigh in on the dangers of workplace fatigue. The American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP) recently released a study, which found that a significant percentage of manufacturing workers in the United States experience workplace fatigue. From physical fatigue caused by prolonged periods of heavy lifting, to mental fatigue resulting from long periods of mental stress, anxiety, or repetitive tasks, these increase the risk of injuries on the job.

In addition, fatigue can be chronic or acute, depending on the factors that are causing the fatigue. The authors of the study examined possible solutions, including wearable technology that could monitor fatigue and help improve safety conditions for workers.

In 2015, researchers from the ASSP interviewed 451 workers about workplace fatigue. After the interviews were complete, the researchers spent the next three years analyzing the interview responses and researching the common causes of workplace fatigue. They found that 58 percent of manufacturing workers responded that they were fatigued at work over the last week.

The most common body parts affected by fatigue were the ankles and feet, the lower back, and the eyes. The top causes of fatigue included sleep deprivation, stress, and shift schedules.

How Workers Cope with Fatigue

The study authors found that when workers began to feel fatigued at work, they would often resort to drinking caffeinated drinks like coffee, tea, or soda. Others would take a walk, stretch, or get some type of exercise, while some found that talking to other co-workers helped make them feel more awake.

Unfortunately, when workers are fatigued, they are more likely to lose concentration, make careless mistakes, or fail to take appropriate safety precautions. This can result in serious injuries, particularly for workers who operate heavy machinery, handle sharp tools, or are exposed to other potentially hazardous materials.

Fatigue Solutions

One possible solution that the study authors examined was wearable technology that could monitor the worker’s heart rate while they are working. While this could be a viable option, the researchers found that there were other interventions that could also help manage fatigue, including posture variance, chemical supplements, and frequent rest breaks.

Advances in the manufacturing industry have increased the demands placed on employees who work at manufacturing plants and on shop floors. As a result, fatigue and other safety-related issues can increase the risk of workplace injuries.

However, these safety-related effects have not yet been captured on an industry-wide scale. More research will need to be done to gain a better understanding of the impact that fatigue has on workers, and how they can avoid fatigue-related injuries.

Baltimore Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Represent Victims of Fatigue-Related Injuries

If you have suffered a fatigue-related injury at work, do not hesitate to contact the Baltimore Workers’ Compensation lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton. You may be eligible to collect Workers’ Compensation benefits that include medical expenses, lost wages, prescription medications, and other costs associated with your injury. Our dedicated team will secure the maximum financial benefits you are entitled to receive. To schedule a free, confidential consultation, call us today at 844-556-4LAW (4529) or contact us online. We serve clients in Baltimore and across Maryland.