Fatigue, sleepiness and workload in train traffic controllers
Authors: Paulo Noriega, Rafael Nascimento, Francisco Rebelo, José Carvalhais, Teresa Cotrim, Elisângela Vilar
Abstract: The levels of fatigue, sleepiness and mental effort in workers could compromise transport system’s security. The objective of this observational field study was to analyze the variation of fatigue, sleepiness and mental effort by shift (morning, afternoon, night), difficulty of work station, age group and consecutive days of work in train traffic controllers. Fatigue was measured by simple reaction time (SRT) and Samn-Perelli perceived fatigue scale; sleepiness by Karolinska Sleepiness Scale (KSS); mental effort with the Rating Scale of Mental Effort (RSME). 93 measurement series were made. The night watch registered the higher values of SRT, fatigue perception scale, KSS and RSME. Workers with 45 years or under rate the work in more difficult work stations with higher values of mental effort. Perceived fatigue and KSS increase with work days’ accumulation. The perceived fatigue, sleepiness and mental effort were maintained at medium/low levels, not appearing to be concerning factors.
Keywords: fatigue, sleepiness, mental effort
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