Shift workers face higher risks of injury when compared with workers who are employed during regular business hours. Numerous studies have suggested that human bodies are designed to sleep in the night and may have a harder time staying awake or functioning equally well during natural sleep times. In addition, shift workers may move between working during the day to other shifts, and the changes in sleeping patterns can lead to fatigue and potentially to injuries.
These types of workers also face challenges when getting home. Studies have shown car accident risks are higher after someone has worked a long shift, especially at night. Shift workers have higher risks of car crashes compared with workers who work in more traditional jobs.
You may not have much say in how your employer structures your time, but you do have options to stay safer:
1) If you work shifts, protect your sleep as much as you can. Try to keep your schedule consistent where possible. For example, consider keeping the same sleep schedule during the week that you do during the weekends, to create some consistency. Create the best conditions for sleep that you can. If you sleep during the day, use blackout shades, ear plugs and eye masks to keep out light and sound so you have the deepest sleep possible. Make sure you have a good mattress and bed to promote comfortable sleep and keep your bedroom a comfortable temperature.
2) See a doctor if you notice any symptoms or are having trouble with sleepiness. If you feel fatigued during the day or have trouble concentrating or staying awake, see your doctor. You may have a sleep disorder or you may have a condition which can be treated.
3) Keep your workplace area bright. If you work during the night, make sure you have enough light and extra lamps to create a false sense of daylight. There are even lamps and lights out there which can mimic natural daylight. These can be a wise investment. The brighter your work area, the more awake you may feel, which can help you potentially prevent accidents.
4) Be extra careful when driving after a shift. Where possible, use carpooling or mass transit to avoid driving alone immediately following a shift. This is the time when you are most likely to experience fatigue significant enough to affect your driving and your risk of a crash will be highest.
Contact Flaxman Law Group for a free consultation with a Hollywood workplace accident attorney if you have been in a car crash in Hollywood, Homestead, Miami or any Southern Florida community. Our team would be happy to offer you a free consultation to review your options.