December/January 2016/2017 (vol. 13/4)

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Research Plus

Pilot fatigue study

Poor work–life balance, older age and being an evening chronotype are among the factors that predict fatigue among commercial airline pilots. Just under one-third (29.5%) of the 502 pilots completing the study were assessed as being fatigued on the Checklist Individual Strength questionnaire. Greater fatigue was significantly associated with: being aged 31–40 years (odds ratio (OR) = 3.36; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.32–8.53) or aged 41–50 (OR = 4.19; CI 1.40–12.47) compared with those aged 21–30; being an evening rather than morning chronotype (OR = 2.40; CI 1.38–4.16); work–life balance disturbance (OR = 1.22; CI 1.10–1.36); higher ‘need for recovery’ (OR = 1.02; CI 1.01–1.04); and moderate alcohol consumption (OR = 3.88; CI 1.21–12.43). There was no association with gender, job title or haul type (ie long versus short haul). Lower fatigue levels were associated with higher general health perception (OR = 0.31; CI 0.20–0.47) and moderate physical activity (OR = 0.77; CI 0.66–0.89).

International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health 2016; online first: doi: 10.1007/s00420-016-1170-2.


Occupational Health at Work December/January 2016/2017 (vol. 13/4) pp40