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Sleep in wildland firefighters: what do we know and why does it matter?

Vincent, Grace E, Aisbett, Brad, Wolkow, Alexander, Jay, Sarah M, Ridgers, Nicola D and Ferguson, Sally A 2018, Sleep in wildland firefighters: what do we know and why does it matter?, International journal of wildland fire, vol. 27, no. 2, pp. 73-84, doi: 10.1071/WF17109.

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Title Sleep in wildland firefighters: what do we know and why does it matter?
Author(s) Vincent, Grace E
Aisbett, BradORCID iD for Aisbett, Brad orcid.org/0000-0001-8077-0272
Wolkow, Alexander
Jay, Sarah M
Ridgers, Nicola DORCID iD for Ridgers, Nicola D orcid.org/0000-0001-5713-3515
Ferguson, Sally A
Journal name International journal of wildland fire
Volume number 27
Issue number 2
Start page 73
End page 84
Total pages 12
Publisher CSIRO Publishing
Place of publication Clayton, Vic.
Publication date 2018
ISSN 1049-8001
Keyword(s) health
performance
physical activity
planned burn
safety
sleep restriction
wildfire
science & technology
life sciences & biomedicine
forestry
Summary Wildland firefighters perform physical work while being subjected to multiple stressors and adverse, volatile working environments for extended periods. Recent research has highlighted sleep as a significant and potentially modifiable factor impacting operational performance. The aim of this review was to (1) examine the existing literature on firefighters’ sleep quantity and quality during wildland firefighting operations; (2) synthesise the operational and environmental factors that impact on sleep during wildland firefighting; and (3) assess how sleep impacts aspects of firefighters’ health and safety, including mental and physical health, physical task performance, physical activity and cognitive performance. Firefighters’ sleep is restricted during wildfire deployments, particularly when shifts have early start times, are of long duration and when sleeping in temporary accommodation. Shortened sleep impairs cognitive but not physical performance under simulated wildfire conditions. The longer-term impacts of sleep restriction on physiological and mental health require further research. Work shifts should be structured, wherever possible, to provide regular and sufficient recovery opportunities (rest during and sleep between shifts), especially in dangerous working environments where fatigue-related errors have severe consequences. Fire agencies should implement strategies to improve and manage firefighters’ sleep and reduce any adverse impacts on firefighters’ work.
Language eng
DOI 10.1071/WF17109
Field of Research 0705 Forestry Sciences
0502 Environmental Science And Management
0602 Ecology
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Related work DU:30079447
Copyright notice ©2018, IJWF
Free to Read? Yes
Use Rights Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial No-Derivatives licence
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30110083

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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.