Flight Attendant Fatigue. Part 5: A Comparative Study of International Flight Attendant Fatigue Regulations and Collective Bargaining Agreements
FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION OKLAHOMA CITY OK CIVIL AEROMEDICAL INST
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In 2008, Congress directed the Civil Aerospace Medical Institute CAMI to conduct follow-on studies of six recommendation areas noted in an integrated report by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration NASA and CAMI regarding flight attendant fatigue. The report concluded that some degree of fatigue-related performance affects were likely under current prescriptive rules. Internationally, fatigue risk is managed almost solely through prescriptive rules based on the maximum hours of work and minimum hours of rest. Traditional prescriptive rules, however, have limited applications to round-the-clock operations, often excluding fatigue-contributing factors such as time zone transitions, layover and recovery, time of day, and circadian rhythms Cabon et al, 2009. Prescriptive rules directly affect crew scheduling and are critical to operator viability however, due to economic recession, operators are routinely scheduling up to the regulation limits, which could result in an increased likelihood of fatigue and fatigue-related mishaps Nesthus, Schroeder, Connors, et al., 2007. In the present study, we obtained regulations n38 and collective bargaining agreements CBA n13 regarding flight attendant duty time and rest from International Civil Aviation Organization ICAO member states using several resources Civil Aviation Authority Web sites, an international cabin safety symposium, Web-based ICAO information exchange, and FAA international field offices and aviation safety inspectors. We analyzed each regulation and CBA to identify duty time and rest rules related to working hour limits, sleep and rest requirements, circadian rhythms, and other factors. When comparing the United States U.S. maximum hours of work and minimum hours of rest with other countries, we concluded that U.S. prescriptive rules are among the least restrictive, representing a greater than typical risk for fatigue related incidents.
- Personnel Management and Labor Relations
- Stress Physiology