Fatigue Utilities

Campaign seeks to raise awareness of fatigue in offshore energy industry

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Understanding Fatigue
Photo: National Workboat Association

Brough, England — The United Kingdom’s National Workboat Association has launched a campaign aimed at curbing fatigue among crew members of offshore energy support vessels.

According to the Health and Safety Executive, which regulates and enforces British workplace safety and health, up to 40 percent of mariners report that they pose a danger to themselves or operations because of their working hours. NWA notes in an Aug. 23 press release that fatigue is of particular concern at offshore wind farms, where operations have shifted farther from shore and can involve changes in deadlines and contractor management.

The Understanding Fatigue campaign – citing government research – points out that fatigue can contribute to falling asleep on duty, errors, poor judgment and injuries. The campaign includes a poster that identifies six warning signs of fatigue: making mistakes, slow reactions, forgetfulness, cutting corners, poor concentration and weariness.

Agency officials are asking employers to display the poster in workplaces and on vessels.

“[Fatigue is] obviously a challenge for vessel operators, and it’s potentially dangerous for crews, so we wanted to research the reasons behind overrunning working hours, and to empower the offshore wind and workboat industries to do something about it,” NWA Secretary Mark Ranson said in the release.

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