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One of the biggest safety mistakes a heavy equipment operator can make is being overly-fatigued on the job. It doesn’t seem like being tired would make much of a difference, but fatigue affects your competency as much as drugs or alcohol can. Here’s part of what happens when you are tired:
- your reaction time slows down
- your thought processes get goofy
- your chance of having an injury-producing accident increases
Don’t Let Fatigue Wreck Your Future
It isn’t always fun to be the one going to bed in time to get enough sleep (7 hours at least), but it really makes a difference when you are at work the next day. Heavy equipment operators are controlling some of the most dangerous things on the job site because in a collision between the machine and the person, the machine wins every time.
ATS instructors are very careful to get the safety procedures drilled into the minds of the students in the heavy equipment operator programs. But tired operators don’t have the ability to respond quickly when the unexpected happens, and it’s dangerous. If you are constantly tired on the job, the small mistakes you make can quickly become overwhelming and your brain isn’t able to keep up. That’s when people get hurt.
If you can mix up your job duties to make the shift less yawn-worthy, do it. Plan breaks for coffee or other caffeine drinks midway through the shift, particularly if you are working nights. All that healthy stuff like balanced diet and fluid intake, enough exercise and stress reduction, are thing that affect fatigue levels. Healthy people have more energy.