Shift workers are more vulnerable to accidents, sleep-related car crashes
and other mishaps because they work such long and inconsistent hours, a study
by insurer Zurich has suggested.
One in seven of the more than 800 public sector employees polled admitted
they had nearly fallen asleep at the wheel, and 15 per cent said they had had
to pull over from driving because of fatigue.
Nearly one in five (19 per cent) suffered from insomnia, 13 per cent
reported feeling depressed, and a fifth claimed they were more forgetful.
Nearly a fifth (18 per cent) of those polled reported to have carried out
shifts lasting between 16-18 hours, and a further one in 10 had worked shifts
that were between 19 and 24 hours long.
A quarter of nurses said the pressure of working irregular hours was the
worst part of their job, along with 16 per cent of the police and 9 per cent of
Vanessa Brindley, Zurich marketing manager, said workers should look at
measures to help tackle the problem, such as finding an alternative to driving
if they’re exhausted, and writing a checklist list or adopting a routine to
help them remember to secure their home.