DWC Reminds Employers About the Dangers of Fatigue in the Workplace


The Texas Department of Insurance's Division of Workers' Compensation (DWC) has reminded Texas employers about the dangers of fatigue in the workplace. DWC's most recent Safety&Work Newsletter included an article that focused on fatigue in the workplace.

DWC reported that workplace fatigue is more than feeling tired and drowsy. "It is mental or physical exhaustion that can affect employees’ health and increase the risk of injury," wrote DWC. "Fatigue costs employers about $136 billion a year."

The National Safety Council (NSC) has reported that more than 70 million Americans suffer from a sleep disorder and that the cost of fatigue is not just measured in lost productivity. Chronic sleep deprivation also causes depression, obesity, cardiovascular disease, and a host of other illnesses.

"It's a big problem that few people spend time thinking about. But recently, industry leaders have begun drawing attention to this issue, and employers are in an ideal position to educate employees on how to stay healthier by getting a good night's sleep," said NSC.

The NSC has a Fatigue Cost Calculator that employers can use to estimate the cost of sleep deficiency for individual businesses.  The calculator uses information entered by the employer and peer-reviewed, scientific research. The results can be used to estimate the potential return on investment of implementing a sleep health program in the workplace.

DWC shared tips on how to reduce workplace fatigue and injuries.  

About the Author: Steve Nichols is the president of Texas based Sentinel Governmental Affairs (Sentinel). Previous to starting Sentinel, Nichols spent 18 years as the Manager of Workers’ Compensation Services at the Insurance Council of Texas. He is a strategic partner with Holstein | Gray, a Canada based international lobbying firm and a principal at CompStat Research Group. Nichols has over 30 years of experience tackling workers’ compensation issues. Sentinel provides government relations, consulting, and other services to the insurance industry.

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