Pulsar Informatics - SM4 Safety Articles & Resources
Sleep is precious. Ample scientific evidence exists that getting enough sleep sharpens the brain, improves mood, helps with weight management and boosts athletic performance. In fact, the American Heart Association recently added sleep to its cardiovascular health checklist. But what if you’re an aviation professional who struggles to get eight consecutive hours? Your total daily sleep may be enough.
Everyone who has travelled in an airplane is familiar with jet lag. True, the effect only applies when travelling east or west. But jet lag is so pervasive and annoying—not to mention a safety risk for pilots—that it merits serious discussion.
Human factors may be the final frontier in aviation risk management. While those factors can’t be handled in the same way as, for example, issues with mechanical systems, there is new thinking in risk management that can help. It includes viewing a high-risk situation as an event and then using a so-called “bowtie diagram” as a tool for defining and addressing it.
It may be November, but the clouds are clearing for air operators. People are flying again. Business meetings are being scheduled live. And the busy holiday season is coming up soon. Is your flight department ready?
Worrying about the current public health crisis and how it affects our jobs, our lives and our health is something that all of us have experienced to some degree over the past year. Unsurprisingly, an increasing number of people have been reporting sleep disturbances since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
We all know that sleep is important. When we don’t get the 7‐9 hours of daily sleep recommended by the National Sleep Foundation and endorsed by a consensus of top scientists, we feel groggy and irritable. It can affect our relationships. Our performance at work suffers.
While commercial airlines continue to struggle amid a dearth of passenger volume, many business aviation and charter air operators have experienced a strong recovery since the initial COVID-19 slowdown this past spring—and indeed, some are busier than ever.
It has been barely six months since the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus was first identified, four months since the first U.S. cases were mentioned in the news and some 10 weeks since lockdowns were imposed to help stem the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.
Clearly, you don’t want to be in a safety‐sensitive situation when a lapse of attention occurs. For your own safety and that of your passengers and fellow crew, it is imperative that you be reliably alert throughout your duty period. But how do you go about ensuring alertness?