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NCJ Number: NCJ 237330   Add to Shopping cart   Find in a Library
Title: Impact of Shift Length in Policing on Performance, Health, Quality of Life, Sleep, Fatigue, and Extra-Duty Employment
  Document URL: PDF 
Author(s): Karen L. Amendola Ph.D. ; David Weisburd Ph.D. ; Edwin E. Hamilton M.A. ; Greg Jones M.A. ; Meghan Slipka M.A. ; Anneke Heitmann Ph.D. ; Jon Shane Ph.D. ; Christopher Ortiz Ph.D. ; Eliab Tarkghen B.S.
Date Published: 12/2011
Page Count: 201
  Annotation: This report presents data on the prevalence of a compressed workweek (CWW) for law enforcement officers, which extends the hours for a shift and reduces the number of work days per week, and presents the findings and methodology for the first known comprehensive randomized experiment to determine the effects of shift length (8-hour, 10-hour, and 12-hour shifts) on officers’ work performance, safety, health, quality of life, sleep, fatigue, off-duty employment, and overtime use.
Abstract: Based on research conducted in two law enforcement agencies (Detroit, MI, and Arlington, TX), the findings showed no significant differences between the three shift lengths regarding work performance, health, safety, and family conflict; however, officers working 10-hour shifts averaged significantly longer sleep periods and reported experiencing a better quality of work life than did the officers working 8-hour shifts. Officers working 12-hour shifts experienced greater levels of sleepiness (subjective measure of fatigue) and lower levels of alertness at work than those assigned to 8-hour shifts. Officers who worked 10-hour shifts spent less time in off-duty employment and in working overtime. This can result in cost savings and potentially more family and leisure time for officers working on a 10-hour shift. A 10-hour shift may be a viable alternative to the traditional 8-hour shift in larger agencies; however, caution is advised in adopting 12-hour shifts. Reduced levels of overtime use for officers working 10-hour and 12-hour shifts suggest agencies will save costs by adopting CWWs. The study used a randomized block experiment at the two sites in order to examine the effects of the three shift lengths on various outcomes. Work performance was measured using both laboratory simulations and departmental data. Health, quality of life, sleep, sleepiness, off-duty employment, and overtime hours were measured by self-reports, including surveys, sleep diaries, and alertness logs. 130 references, 25 tables, 1 figure, and appended study materials
Main Term(s): Police work scheduling
Index Term(s): Police safety ; Off-duty employment ; Cost effectiveness analysis ; Police work attitudes ; Police family issues ; Healthcare ; NIJ final report ; Michigan ; Texas
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
US Department of Justice
Office of Justice Programs
United States of America
Grant Number: 2005-FS-BX-0057
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/NCJRS
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Country: United States of America
Language: English
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