Interim NIOSH Training for Emergency Responders: Reducing Risks Associated with Long Work Hours

Consider Providing Services That Help Workers Work Long Hours Temporarily

When long work hours are not avoidable, some services can reduce non-work demands on workers so they can devote their time off to rest and sleep.

Consider providing these:

  • Healthy foods and drinks at the worksite (see ‘Diet’ in Section VI for recommended foods)
  • Rooms to sleep close to the worksite
  • Comfortable uniforms and laundering of clothes
  • Child care
  • Transportation to sleeping rooms
  • Counseling and healthcare
  • Recreation equipment and supplies

Ask your staff what other services might be helpful.

  • Avoid pressuring workers to work extra shifts. Longer shifts are associated with increased errors and injuries.
  • Promote education of your staff about sleep and strategies to reduce risks associated with long work hours. Include this information in orientation for new employees.

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Page last reviewed: April 1, 2020