Getting more tired as the day passes is common in any occupation. Many people experienced some amount of drowsiness after eating lunch. A rigorous job often includes a feeling of physical depletion. However, becoming fatigued is another story. Fatigue includes exhaustion that can affect your alertness, judgment, reflexes and agility. Recovering from exhaustion requires more than an energy drink or a short break to clear the cobwebs.
Mental and physical exhaustion on a busy construction site can significantly increase the risk for injuries. In addition to a higher potential for being in an accident, fatigued workers can begin to suffer other health-related issues and increased stress on the job.
Common Issues That May Increase Worker Fatigue
It is clear that the construction industry is inherently dangerous. Workers often have physically demanding roles that are hard on the body. As workers age, they may continue to stay in shape, but the body can take longer to recover. Some of the most common sources of workplace fatigue include:
Long hours: Unfortunately, the demands of the industry, with tight deadlines and potential weather-related delays, can lead to workers becoming overwhelmed with work duties. Employers in the construction industry often require workers to increase their hours to meet deadlines. Working into the night and through the weekend can deprive workers of the necessary time off the clock to get enough sleep to recover from the workload.
Adverse work environments: Extreme temperatures, noisy worksites and exposure to toxic fumes can all place a great deal of stress on the human body.
Personal choices of workers: Smoking, drinking, unhealthy eating habits, as well as stressful interpersonal relationships, can all lead to stress, the loss of sleep and increased fatigue.
It is important for workers to understand that there are many things that can affect alertness and agility on the job. Workers should remain aware that their reaction time often slows down as they grow more tired. When the affects of the day rise to the level of exhaustion, the risk for workplace injury is real.