Danish Defence Research Database


Træthed og Risikostyring Ombord på Søværnets Enheder

Student thesis: Diploma Thesis

  • Lasse Kanstrup
Afgangsprojekt, (Diploma)
Sufficient sleep is important for safety. The report covering the collision between HNoMS Helge Ingstad and the tanker Sola TS advices the Norwegian Navy to examine how their crews can register their rest hours to increase safety without hindering military operations. US Navy is also trying to increase safety and the health of their crews by issuing new procedures regarding rest and watch schedules. This issuing was accelerated due to two accidents in 2017 where the destroyers USS John S. McCain and USS Fitzgerald both collided with tankers. In both cases sleep deprivation and fatigue was considerable contributing factors. Inspired by these initiatives, the purpose of this project is to determine whether the bridge officers in the Royal Danish Navy are affected by fatigue when they are on watch. How they assess their fatigue, and what effect a fatigue risk assessment system would have on the safety of operation onboard.

This is examined through three interviews with navigational officers on three different ship classes to determine how they feel affected by fatigue and how they assess their condition. The project also involves an interview with a member of the Danish Naval Accident Investigation Board to explore how rest hour registration and an Operational Risk Management sheet could increase safety.

The results show that bridge officers are likely to be affected by chronic fatigue on ships that sail continuously for more than a few days. The bridge officers do not have a structured system for assessing their fatigue and condition, and they simply evaluate whether they think they are capable of safely navigating the ship or not. A fatigue risk assessment system could increase safety onboard Danish naval ships if certain conditions are met and they are designed with military operations in mind. Based on this project it is recommended that fatigue in the Royal Danish Navy is investigated further to get a better overview of the nature of the problem. It is also recommended that the Navy conducts trials with fatigue risk assessment systems to explore the real-world effects.
Publication date18 Feb 2020
Number of pages37
Publishing institutionInstitut for Militære Operationer
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