News & Media

Firefighters needed for sleep study

By: Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC

Category: Health & Safety, Planning & Research

  3.31 PM 8 October, 2013

Location: General

Views: 3854

Bushfire CRC PhD student Grace Vincent from Deakin University is recruiting 50 firefighters from across Australia to help gather important data on firefighters and sleep during multi-day deployments.

This research is important in managing firefighter health and safety, while providing ongoing protection against bushfires.


Firefighters often work long hours with little rest between shifts. Inadequate sleep increases the likelihood of impaired performance – this can result in errors and incidents, and impacts on the safety and efficiency of firefighters.  But there is currently no data about the sleep length and quality that firefighters experience during multi-day deployments.


Participating in the research is easy. It will not impair suppression tasks. Firefighters who take part in the study only need to:

  1. Wear a wrist activity monitor for three days before a deployment, during the deployment and three days after deployment. This allows sleep quality and quantity when actively deployed to be compared to an individual’s usual sleep patterns.
  2. Wear a shirt pocket monitor during fire suppression, to measure the amount of physical activity performed on the fireground.
  3. Complete a sleep and work diary. This diary will give an indication of total sleep hours and perceived fatigue levels.

Want more information?

This poster gives the results of the research so far, but more participants are needed to ensure the study is statistically viable. To express interest in participating in this vital research, or for more information, contact Grace Vincent, PhD candidateThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 0478 019 526.

Last Updated: 08 October 2013