Facility Forum - Summer 2016 - (Page 38)

HEALTH & SAFETY Workplace Fatigue Preventing and Managing an Emerging Health & Safety Issue By Monica Szabo, Executive Director Government, Municipal & Public Safety for the Public Services Health & Safety Association Fatigue in the workplace is an emerging health and safety issue that requires increased understanding of its impact on work performance and prevention methods and programs. With its mandate to improve health and safety in the Ontario workplace, the Public Services Health and Safety Association (PSHSA) is taking major steps to improve how fatigue can be prevented and managed in the workplace. A link between fatigue and impact on work performance has been shown in various research studies. Increasingly, municipal workers who work weekends and shifts and are responsible for critical operations are seeing fatigue as an emerging workplace issue that needs to be addressed and resources are required for preventative efforts. Numerous factors may cause fatigue to develop including shift work, workload, and personal burdens. In addition, stress from reduced budgets, staff scheduling and a slowing economy all go towards adding to an already stressful workplace. The organization itself suffers when its staff is subjected to fatigue which may result in increased absenteeism, turnover and increasing Workers' Compensation costs. This could also result in conflict between management and workers, which only adds to the overall dysfunction and challenges. Overall, fatigue can contribute poor mental performance, which leads to poor decisionmaking and unintentional errors. In some situations fatigue can be addressed by getting sufficient sleep or leaving a stressful work environment; however, continuing a poor sleeping routine or not coping with the workplace environment will continue to contribute to ongoing chronic fatigue. Recreation Workers Work Environment Recreations workers take care of facilities that are seven-day a week 38 | ONTARIO RECREATION FACILITIES ASSOCIATION operations. Most facilities operate for 16 hours with some operating 24 hours to conduct maintenance and upkeep. It is not uncommon for workers to work double shifts and during peak periods work short change shifts which means operators leave at mid-night and come back to work for 8 a.m. It is not uncommon for recreation staff to live a fair distance from where they work, making it necessary for them to drive a significant distance to and from the facility which increases the amount of time that they need to be rested and at peak performance. Facility staff who have used a pedometer have reported regular distances of 12 to 15 km every shift. The constant access to concession foods contributes to poor diet. The constantly changing environmental conditions encountered over the work shift travelling from warm to cold

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Facility Forum - Summer 2016

Industry Watch
Arena Lighting – The Here and Now!
The Cemeterian
Understanding the Highway Traffic Act – Demerit Points
Effective Emergency Planning
Controlling Recreation Facility Energy Vampires
Risk Management
Poor Aquatic Maintenance
Pool Fouling
Member Profile
ORFA’s Top 10 Recreational Supervisory Failures
Health & Safety (PSHSA)
Shutting Down the Refrigeration Plant for the Summer Season
Energy Savings Inside Your Refrigeration System
Energy Champion
Index of Advertisers

Facility Forum - Summer 2016

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