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Shift work (love it or hate it?)

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  • Shift work (love it or hate it?)

    After nearly 4 years of shift work I applied and went onto a burglary investigation unit for 6 months. One of the main reasons was that my body was shot to pieces from the shifts.
    Now after 6 months of daytime working (more or less 8-4 with a couple of very early mornings and a couple of very late finishes a week) I can't wait to return to shift next week.

    I didn't realise how much spare time it gives you (if you use it properly). I am now sick of going to the gym when everyone else goes and doing my shopping when the world and his wife and kids does theirs. Back to shift and I can return to being the only one in the pool at 1000am and looking around the DIY store without having my ankles broken by a trolley during the Sunday morning rush.
    I can also look forward to sinking into my bed while listening to everyone else driving to work outside my window.

    How does everyone else feel about shifts ?

    Stay safe

    Uk

  • #2
    hate them....

    I'd rather go sell televisions at the mall than go back to working weekends and overnights.
    -Sparky

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    • #3
      Personally I love working weekends and overnights...just a personal preference I guess.

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      • #4
        I used to love working evenings. I didn't even mind it when we has 28 day forced rotations. Now that I am much more, shall we say, seasoned, I hate shift work. I worked straight evenings for almost 20 years, then got the oppurtunity to go day shift. The we had our once a year forced rotation and got forced back onto evenings. I am so ready to go back to days. Shift work stinks.

        [ 06-29-2003, 08:35 PM: Message edited by: Evnings ]
        RADAR is the 8th wonder of the world.

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        • #5
          Shift work just plain sucks. It's bad for you body, it's bad for your family life, and it's just plain bad period. At least that is the way I felt about it.

          Now I didn't really give a rip about WHEN I worked, as long as it was on the same shift. I spent 8 months on a "relief supervisor" shift when I first made sergeant. Two swings, two graves and one day every week. Both shift changes were double backs, so I was exhausted all the freaking time. Sure, I had long weekends, but spent the first part of it trying to catch up on sleep.

          I've worked the 28 day rotation, the monthly rotation, the weekly rotation and the above mentioned 8 months of hell. Put me on any shift you want me on, with whatever days off you choose, just put me there and LEAVE ME THERE!

          Another reason to enjoy my retirement.
          6P1 (retired)

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          • #6
            I LOOOOOOVE working my night shift. I hate having day shift being so short and working 3-6 twelve hour days EVERY week...that gets old
            Nobody ever wants to have to fight, but its a darn good idea for someone to know how.

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            • #7
              When it was just me, I loved shiftwork. Since I have a child, though, days is all around a better deal.

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              • #8
                I love shifts, especialy night shifts. It suits my sleeping habits, and I much prefer to be going to work when everyone else is coming home, for much of the same reasons as above.. I like doing things like shopping etc when its empty.

                The one thing I HATE about rotating shifts is when shift change comes and it's changing from a Night to a Day.. the first two shifts are just for my body to adjust.

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                • #9
                  Love my shift. Were on a 5-2/5-3 rotation. Love having my days off on a Tues, Weds and Thurs. Noone is out during the day, noone monopolizing the weights at the YMCA. Plus im on a swing (days/mid shift) So I get to work day shift plus night shift in the same week; my fav shift.

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                  • #10
                    I liked shift work, but fortunately ours didn't rotate. I worked graveyard most of the time I was in uniform and loved it. You're dealing with an entirely different clientele than either swing or especially day shift.

                    It is hard on the body though. When I got promoted and put on day shift, I had forgotten how it was to not be tired so much of the time. The only time I really felt good on graveyard was when I was working....
                    Jim
                    "Life's tough, it's tougher if you're stupid." John Wayne

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                    • #11
                      Our patrol guys recently went to 12 hour shifts, and still rotate every month from mids to days to swings. They seem to like it better than the 8 hour shifts off, though, because they get a longer stretch of time to recuperate.

                      Kristen

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                      • #12
                        I enjoy shift work, I've never had a 9 - 5 monday to friday job. My reasons are pretty much the same as UKcop2.

                        Our shift patern at the moment ain't the best, we work, 7 nights 2200 - 0600 1 day 1400 - 2200 two rest days, 7 days 0600-1400 four rest days then 7 nights 1700-0100 and 1 day 0900-1700 two rest days followed by 7 days 0900-1700 and four rest days. All shifts are 8 hours.

                        If we have enough staff we should be moveing to a Variable shift arangement in September.

                        Mac
                        Si vis pacem, para bellum

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                        • #13
                          When I was single, shift work was great. I was young, dumb, and full of .. anticah...PATION!

                          Even when young and married.. it was okay... I still loved to get into the $hit on the overnights. Play with thugs all night and NO BRASS... plus I hated driving through traffic.

                          Not to mention that as a rookie, you expect the first five years or so to be spent on nights and weekends. It's your turn in the barrel. Plus, no matter what the seniority, the unwritten rule was that the folks without families bid on the night shifts to let the family guys have a normal schedule. There was no way I was going to try to bump one of my brothers from a day job if they had a family and I didn't.

                          But ofc129 and Don, and some of the other "more seasoned" posters are SPOT ON!

                          Shift work bites.. it IS hard on the body.. and it IS hard on the family.

                          I love Po-Po work... especially investigations... but brothers and sisters let me tell you..

                          This job can't love me back.

                          My wife and kids can.

                          So you want to know which relationship I am going to invest in more?

                          Like I said.. I can go sell televisions or dig ditches all day... no skin off my nose.

                          Here's some free advice for you rookies..

                          This job will take your sweat, your tears, your blood, and maybe even your life.

                          Then, at the end of a good 20, they will then take back their uniforms and their badge back and show you the door.

                          Keep things in perspective. It's just a job. It's not who you are.
                          -Sparky

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                          • #14
                            Sparky pretty much nailed down my thoughts on shift work. Takes a toll on the body, mind, and family. I pulled Christmas Eve and Christmas Day shifts for five years on nights so the guys with families could be at home. Once I was married and had kids, the rotating shifts turned into a huge pain. The fact that I was several years into the job also made me realize that there was still a world outside of night shifts with all the freaks and nutjobs who only come out to play in the dark. I used to love rotating to nights, now I dread it like the plague. I was out of work two years ago for about 10 months following surgery and rehab for a crash at work. I fell into a regular cycle of sleep and eating during those months and I swear I felt like I was 21 again. I got to sleep with my wife and actually participated in my kids lives like "normal" parents do. When I went back to work and started the rotation (ours are 7a-7p, 1p-1a, and 7p-7a rotated three freaking times a month) I thought back to those 10 months off and realized that even with the pain and aggravation of physical therapy, I felt better for those 10 months than any 10 months prior or post since starting in law enforcement. For me, shift work sucks. I do work with a guy who loves the rotation, though. He says the change of pace breaks up the monotany for him. He's also 25 and has about two years on the job with no wife or kids. I would imagine given a few more years of wear and tear on the body and mind or maybe slide a family into the picture, and he will join the other 8 members on our crew and give a big thumbs down to shift work.

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                            • #15
                              I love working nights. After nearly 15 years, I still would rather work patrol at night than anything else. For the next 14 years, I'll be on swings or graves. We rotate shifts every six months, and can stay on the same shift for no more than a year.

                              My wife is a night owl, too, so the shifts work well for us. We don't have any kids, and aren't going to, so there is no issue with that. Being on swings or graves gives me time to do stuff before going to work, when it's not so crowded. I hate trying to shop at 5:30 PM when everyone else is crowding everything.

                              I keep pretty much the same hours on my days off, which really improves things. My neighbors must think I'm a tweeker, since I've been known to be out firing up the barbecue at 0300, or running out to the store in the middle of the night for milk.

                              I also like having weekdays off for the same reason. We hardly ever go places anymore, but when I was single, just about all my days off were spent on motorcycle rides or waterskiing. The Delta and lakes are nice and empty on Mondays and Tuesdays - just cops and firefighters.

                              Nothing good happens on days. Fighting traffic, can't get to details quickly, stupid calls (property line disputes, nitpicky BS), child molest reports from CPS, more reports than time in the shift, etc.

                              Graves and second half of swings, no traffic, a lot more crooks out, very few "well, I don't know who else to call, so I called 911" details, time to write, no kids hounding us for stickers at every call, lots of good action.

                              The times I've been on days, I am tired for six months. I just can't go to sleep early enough in the evening; I have been that way my whole life. Sooner or later, I will be stuck in Court Security for a year and will have to adjust.

                              Dayshift sucks.

                              [ 07-01-2003, 05:05 AM: Message edited by: ateamer ]
                              Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. - Ronald Reagan

                              I don't think It'll happen in the US because we don't trust our government. We are a country of skeptics, raised by skeptics, founded by skeptics. - Amaroq

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