Asleep on the Job

Asleep on the Job

Thanks to Phil LaDuke for finding this article. Phil says:

While I’ve written a great deal about sleep deprivation in the workplace, this is by far my most comprehensive work on the subject. I think this is an issue that crosses all industries and functions. At any rate, I hope you will give it a read and let me know what you think.

The lethal connection between falls from height and sleep deprivation

imageWorking at heights remains one of the most intrinsically dangerous industrial activities. A fall from heights means, if not certain death, a serious and perhaps crippling injury. Yet despite this, many organisations still face a tough time getting workers to use fall protection.


According to the UK’s Health and Safety Executive (HSE), two thirds of fatal injuries to workers are caused by only four kinds of injuries – one of which is falls from height. Falls, slips and trips combined made up more than half of all reported major injuries, and almost a third of injuries lasting more than three days.

Experts agree that the best way to protect against injuries caused by falling from heights is to avoid working at height in the first place, but it is seldom that simple. In many parts of the world, working at height is a one of the most common occupational requirements. This is particularly prevalent in the construction sector, but working at height injuries are also common in agriculture, oil and gas and even service industries.

According to the HSE, an average of 50 people die in Great Britain annually because of falls from height. In 2012 the HSE reported that 26% of all fatal construction site accidents were caused by falls from height. What’s more, although injuries caused by falls from height represent only 13% of the overall injuries, a staggering 53% of fatalities were caused by falls from height.


Phil LaDuke

Phil LaDuke

Principle and Partner at ERM
Phil LaDuke
Phil La Duke is a principle and partner in Environmental Resources Management (ERM) a leading global provider of environmental, health, safety, risk, and social consulting services. With over 140 offices in 40 countries and nearly 6,000 top professionals, ERM can help you wherever you find yourself doing business. At ERM we are committed to providing a service that is consistent, professional, and of the highest quality to create value for our clients. Over the past five years we have worked for more than 50% of the Global Fortune 500 delivering innovative solutions for business and selected government clients helping them understand and manage the sustainability challenges that the world is increasingly facing. Phil works primarily in the Performance and Assurance practice at ERM; a speaker, author, consultant, trainer, provocateur…Phil La Duke wears many hats. As an expert in safety, training, organizational development, and culture change, Phil and ERM can help you motivate your workforce, conduct safety performance assessments, help you to build robust training infrastructures, craft interventions to improve how your work place values safety, provide insights to your executive staff, and craft and execute business solutions. If you’re interested in what Phil La Duke and ERM can do for you, or if you would like to inquire about employment opportunites at ERM, contact Phil at

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