In its newest survey report, “Fatigue in Safety-Critical Industries: Impact, Risks and Recommendations,” the National Safety Council has found that 69% of the nation’s “safety-critical” employees, including construction, manufacturing, transportation and utility workers, report that they are tired on the job.

In construction, a full 100% of employees reported some risk factor for fatigue at work, including long shifts and sleep loss. Almost 50% reported that they work during “high-risk” hours for fatigue, such as at night or in the early morning.

The survey has also exposed a gap between how employees and employers view the risks of jobsite fatigue. Ninety percent of employers view fatigue as a safety and productivity issue, as compared to only 72% of workers.

Fatigue is a hidden but common hazard in all workplaces, regardless of industry. In safety-critical positions, however, the consequences of being tired can be catastrophic. For example, mistakes on construction sites, around gas line digging areas or behind the wheel of big-rig trucks easily can lead to injuries or even death.

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