Shift workers are most likely to suffer injuries and illnesses caused by drowsiness, as they are the type of workers who tend to work against their natural body clock. Generally, shift workers have to fight against their circadian rhythm in order to stay awake during the night – when they are programmed to sleep – and sleep during the day, when they are programmed to be awake.
A great amount of shift work involves long-distance driving, so those who drive during the times their bodies are programmed to be sleeping – between midnight and 6 am – are six times more likely to be involved in a car or truck accident than other workers.
Basic company ‘fatigue management’ means employers or managers know the risks to identify and how these risks can be appropriately addressed. Managing fatigue and the dangerous state of drowsiness in the workplace can help to lower the chance of an injury or accident.