open access

Vol 60, No 1-2 (2009)
Original article
Published online: 2009-12-17
Submitted: 2013-02-18
Get Citation

Comparison of alertness levels in ship crew. An experiment on rotating versus fixed watch schedules

Shalini Arulanandam, Gregory Chan Chung Tsing
International Maritime Health 2009;60(1-2):6-9.

open access

Vol 60, No 1-2 (2009)
MARITIME MEDICINE Original articles
Published online: 2009-12-17
Submitted: 2013-02-18

Abstract

A short pilot study was conducted during a shipboard training deployment to compare alertness levels in the same crew members while working a fixed watch schedule, and then a rotating watch schedule. Alertness levels were assessed before and after each duty watch using measurements of oculomotor function (Fitness Impairment Tester). Saccadic velocity was shown to have the greatest correlation with duration of sleep deprivation and was significantly slower (indicating decreased alertness) in the crew working the rotating watch schedule than the crew working the fixed watch schedule. This pilot study corroborates previous studies’ recommendations that fixed watch schedules allow better acclimatization of sleep patterns, thus minimizing fatigue and increasing operational alertness.

Abstract

A short pilot study was conducted during a shipboard training deployment to compare alertness levels in the same crew members while working a fixed watch schedule, and then a rotating watch schedule. Alertness levels were assessed before and after each duty watch using measurements of oculomotor function (Fitness Impairment Tester). Saccadic velocity was shown to have the greatest correlation with duration of sleep deprivation and was significantly slower (indicating decreased alertness) in the crew working the rotating watch schedule than the crew working the fixed watch schedule. This pilot study corroborates previous studies’ recommendations that fixed watch schedules allow better acclimatization of sleep patterns, thus minimizing fatigue and increasing operational alertness.
Get Citation
About this article
Title

Comparison of alertness levels in ship crew. An experiment on rotating versus fixed watch schedules

Journal

International Maritime Health

Issue

Vol 60, No 1-2 (2009)

Article type

Original article

Pages

6-9

Published online

2009-12-17

Bibliographic record

International Maritime Health 2009;60(1-2):6-9.

Authors

Shalini Arulanandam
Gregory Chan Chung Tsing

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