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Study reveals rise in sleep-deprived transport workers

A study from Ball State University has determined what professions have seen a rise in sleep-deprived workers. Researchers compared the years 2010 and 2018 and found that while 30.9% of all respondents reported getting less than seven hours of sleep in 2010, that percentage went up to 35.6% in 2018. Truckers in Georgia will want to take note because the transport and material moving industry was deeply affected.

At the top, those in the police and military reported the most cases of poor sleep (50%), followed by those in the health care industry (45%). More than 40% of both truckers and workers in production reported a lack of sleep. As for how many of the truckers were long-haul drivers, the study did not say. It is clear, though, that sleep deprivation often arises in those professions that tend to have 24-hour shift work.

The study involved some 150,000 adults. Men were more frequently afflicted than women, the elderly more than the young, and those in the western U.S. more than those to the east. Multiracial adults saw the highest jump in sleep deprivation between the two years. Widowed, divorced and separated people also experienced higher levels of sleep deprivation. Lack of sleep can cause physical and mental problems, make workers more prone to injury and result in loss of productivity.

Fatigue is an all-too-frequent cause of truck accidents as many truckers will exceed the time they can reasonably spend on the road in the effort to meet deadlines. Fatigue can be hard to prove, though, so occupants of other vehicles who were injured in such a crash may want to meet with an experienced attorney and discuss their situation.