Study on the assessment of seafarers' fatigue / by Huanxin Wang.

Huanxin. Wang, World Maritime University


Global concern about the issue of fatigue at sea is widely evident across the shipping industry. Fatigue-induced human errors have been identified as major contributing factors in most maritime accidents. This paper attempts to explore an approach to evaluate the degree of seafarers’ fatigue and to propose some suggestions on fatigue prevention and management. According to the definition given by the IMO, Fatigue is a state of feeling tired, weary, or sleepy that results from prolonged mental or physical work, extended periods of anxiety, exposure to harsh environments, or loss of sleep. The effects of fatigue are impaired performance and diminished alertness. In this study, the definition and effects of fatigue at sea are first examined, followed by a review of fatigue-induced maritime incidents and the prevalence of fatigue in the maritime industry. The factors affecting navigation officers’ fatigue are categorized into four groups in this study: crew-specific factors, management factors, ship-specific factors and environmental factors. The evaluation index system and weight of evaluating indexes are determined by applying the AHP. Efforts are made to develop an evaluation model for seafarers’ fatigue with the application of multi-level fuzzy comprehensive evaluation. Consequently, recommendations on supervision and prevention of fatigue onboard ships are proposed for maritime organizations, shipping companies and seafarers.