Fatigue Risk Management in Aviation Maintenance: Current Best Practices and Potential Future Countermeasures
NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION MOFFETT FIELD CA AMES RESEARCH CENTER
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The unregulated hours and frequent night work characteristic of maintenance can produce significant levels of employee fatigue, with a resultant risk of maintenance error. Fatigue Risk Management Systems FRMS are widely used to manage fatigue among flight crew and drivers of commercial vehicles, but comprehensive approaches to fatigue risk management are still uncommon within maintenance organizations. In the wider transport industry, the objective of most FRMS has been to reduce fatigue to an acceptable level. Two additional objectives can be identified for FRMS in the maintenance environment reducing or capturing fatigue-related errors, and minimizing the harm caused by fatigue-related errors. A range of countermeasures can help to achieve these three objectives in aviation maintenance. Some of these countermeasures are currently being applied within the industry, while others may become feasible in the future. The data available on best practices for fatigue risk management in aviation maintenance are continually evolving. This should be considered an interim report.