NSC: Fatigue a ‘hidden but deadly epidemic’

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Forty-three percent of U.S. workers believe they are too tired to function safely at work, according to a new report from the National Safety Council.

Fatigue in the Workplace: Causes and Consequences of Employee Fatigue is based on a survey conducted by NSC of 2,000 working adults and their experience with fatigue.

Results show that 97 percent of workers have at least one risk factor for fatigue, including working at night or in the early morning, working long shifts without regular breaks, working more than 50 hours each week, and enduring long commutes. In addition, 76 percent reported feeling tired at work, 53 percent say they are less productive and 44 percent have trouble focusing.

“These findings are a literal wake-up call: When we’re tired, we can put ourselves and others at risk,” Deborah A.P. Hersman, president and CEO of NSC, said in a press release. “We hope Americans recognize that impairment stems not just from alcohol and drugs, but lack of restorative rest – fitness for duty starts with getting a good night’s sleep.”