Managing fatigue in aviation maintenance

On March 6, By sasadmin In Blog 0 Comment The purpose of the Fatigue Risk Management System FRMS is to serve to reduce, as far as practicably reasonable, workplace fatigue and its associated risks, to ensure a safe and error-free work environment for employees, contractors, and clients. Human error may serve as a precursor to an incident or accident.

Managing fatigue in aviation maintenance

Why is this not a thing in aviation yet? Of course this pod is only an example of a possible solution of the widespread problem that is fatigue.

In the case of fatigue, it might surprise you to know that there is one sure, bulletproof way to reduce fatigue almost instantly and increase human performance dramatically… sleep. During a "flight," each pilot was wired to record brain activity EEG and eye activity -- evidence of those split-second periods of "microsleep" that occur when one is dozing off.

In the last 90 minutes of flight, pilots who got naps had 34 microsleeps. Such real-world tests apply to us all, he says. Their performance and safety are going to suffer if they are sleepy. A microsleep MS is a temporary episode of sleep which may last for a fraction of a second or up to 30 seconds where an individual fails to respond to some arbitrary sensory input and becomes unconscious.

Managing fatigue in aviation maintenance

If it is fatigued your brain just stops working without warning! One of the biggest problems around this theme is that the fatigued individual is the person least able to judge his or her own performance. The pilots swore they were awake all the time, but the instrumentation demonstrated their brains were medically sleeping multiple instances on the job during final approach of course only microsleeps as Mark Rosekind describes.

Being fatigued is compared as having a similar impact on human performance as being legally drunk. Well, your fatigued engineer, who is working night shift 5 and just had a lousy rest due to constuction next door, has about the same level of performance.

Where is the outrage about fatigue then? It seems a lot of organisations are simply burying their head in the sand about the issue. Beyond the HF course we give engineers every 2 years where they are told in serious tones that fatigue might increase the chance that they make a human error no shit…, ever worked a night shift roster?

In most cases fatigue is left totally up to the individual to manage, In aviation we still insist that our maintenance staff work uninterrupted without official naps that is through the night. One of the standard weapons to combat fatigue is heavy use of caffeine and other stimulants.

Remember that caffeine has a half life of about 12 hours, so you will still feel the effects when you want to sleep. This long-term heavy use can disrupt sleeping patterns even more and lead to a vicious cycle of lesser quality rest which only worsens the problem for the next shift.

In theory, if you really are too fatigued, yes you can put yourself as not fit for duty due to medical reasons. But there are powerful disincentives that keep people from doing so financial, peer pressure, not wanting to let the team down,….

A controlled nap with a 3rd person in the flightdeck as described above can do wonders for restoring performance, but napping wrong e. Companies like Google and the like are starting to catch on that it is not the number of hours that staff work which impacts productivity but their performance during those hours.

They allow a strategy of controlled naps high quality rest, limited to optimal duration which has remarkable benefits to restore levels of cognitive performance. For ground staff, solutions like these sleep pods in combination with wearables to monitor performance on an on-going basis can help people to have a high quality rest for the optimum time, while avoiding the problem of sleep inertia.

The main obstacle will be the perception about sleep in the organisation.

Managing fatigue in aviation maintenance

Staff which work while excessively fatigued are in fact exposing the organisation to unacceptable levels of risk of human error. The good news is that unlike people under influence, fatigued individuals can be helped immediately!

Managing fatigue through napping is one of the sanest actions we can take to maintain acceptable levels of performance.Analysis of Impact of Aircraft Age on Safety for Air Transport Jet Airplanes Authorities support National Aviation Authorities in managing older fleets under their responsibility.

1. Background fatigue or Widespread Fatigue Damage (WFD) rose following the dramatic in-. If something I learned last week when I attended to the conference that the RAeS organised at Cranfield (Staying Alert: Managing Fatigue in Maintenace) is that Fatigue Management has three legs: the individual, the organisation and the regulator.

Site Contents

I travelled to UK to maintain my currency as Aviation Maintenance Human Factors, but also . Proactive Tools For Identifying and Managing Human Factors Risks in Aviation Maintenance Dr David Embrey Managing Director Human Reliability Associates.

Aims of the workshop –Fatigue –Quality of external support from procedures / checklists –Quality of communications. Fatigue must be managed by aviation departments to limit its effect on pilots, flight attendants, and maintenance personnel, among others.

The guidelines are offered as a resource and are practical suggestions of ways an operator can improve the safety and efficiency of its operations. Jeff Wofford, chief pilot and director of aviation, CommScope, highlighted efforts his company went through to upgrade to a larger aircraft, a Challenger , and effectively managing change.

Managing Rail Staff Fatigue. Figure 2. The FRMS Process (after United States Federal Aviation Administration).. Integrating the FRMS with wider risk control systems guidance “Managing fatigue in safety critical work”.

Section 6 of this document now revises and updates that guidance.

Fatigue in Aviation Maintenance Environments