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Thoughts on Sleeping on the job

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  • Thoughts on Sleeping on the job

    I would like to hear your thoughts about sleeping on the job. Is it very rare it happens or do you hear about it somewhat more than the media may show? I was reading through this article and it made me think that something like this wouldn’t be as rare as it mentions. After two shifts and then doing traffic. Not sure if I understand it right, but isn't that close to 24 hours with no sleep? Thanks for your comments.



    http://www.officer.com/article/artic...ion=1&id=31141
    "Those who are undisciplined are held back. Those who are disciplined are allowed to go forward."

  • #2
    The trick is to park your car facing east, so the sunlight will wake you up.
    Jerry
    "If all else fails, stop using all else!"

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    • #3
      Hey watch waht you say about the Sgt caught by the Chief. I know him NOOOO its not me... I used to work with Sgt. though when he was a patrolman... Not good being caught by the new chief who just came back from more than 3 years on disability for being shot l.o.d.
      NEVER good being caught cooping.... Cant coop unless you are working with a partner
      I got nothing for now

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      • #4
        Alot of guys will park somewhere where they can point their radar guns so the whine will alert them to the Sgt or anyone else approaching in a car.

        Cell phones have also helped guys to look out for eachother when they dont answer the radio

        I remeber these 1982 Plymouths we used to have. The shoulder harness was at this angle where you could loop in around the steering wheel to make yourself a "hammock" for your head

        To tell you the truth, you will feel better if you get out and walk around. Sometimes a car nap will make yo feel even worse. If you have a weight room n the pct and the boss doesnt mind, a quick weight workout at 4 am will make you feel like a million bucks for a couple hours, but you will crash hard after that

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        • #5
          In my last agency we had so many overtime details that we had trouble staffing them. This burned the officers out to the point that it raised some real safety issues. Finally the department issued guidelines as to how many hours could be worked before sleep was mandatory.

          In my agency prior to that, we had an unwritten policy that if you couldn't keep awake and the call load permitted it, you came into the station, had the dispatcher log you off on comp or vacation time, went down into the basement and took a nap for a couple of hours. There was a phone down there so the dispatcher could call you if things started getting hot in the field before your nap was up.
          Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

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          • #6
            We have Emergency Rest Time (ERT). For every hour we work beyond 16 hours, in a 24 hour period, we get 1.5 hrs of compensation time and double time pay. We have the same problem with mandatory overtime and inadequate staffing.

            Personally, I would rather an officer find a safe place to take a cat nap then dose off while driving or work while excessively fatigued.

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            • #7
              Wouldn't it be nice if the PD can parnter with the FD so officers can stop by to take a nap on a bed or workout in the fire station or cook urself a nice meal to stay awake. I am sure its better to nap their than in a car on the side of the road or in a parking lot where citizens or "bad boys" can see you

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              • #8
                Originally posted by SDU_Eric
                Wouldn't it be nice if the PD can parnter with the FD so officers can stop by to take a nap on a bed or workout in the fire station or cook urself a nice meal to stay awake. I am sure its better to nap their than in a car on the side of the road or in a parking lot where citizens or "bad boys" can see you
                cooking a nice meal in my opinion makes you more tired, lol.

                But partnering with the FD is a good suggestions.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Tennsix
                  We have Emergency Rest Time (ERT). For every hour we work beyond 16 hours, in a 24 hour period, we get 1.5 hrs of compensation time and double time pay. We have the same problem with mandatory overtime and inadequate staffing.

                  Personally, I would rather an officer find a safe place to take a cat nap then dose off while driving or work while excessively fatigued.
                  I'm curious: doesn't a policy like that just create an incentive to work too many hours? It would make more sense (to me, anyway) to require that an officer rest for a minimum period after working XX hours (say, 16 out of 24), rather than just pay him more money. Money is always nice, but it doesn't make you less tired, and you still need to live to spend it.

                  I know of departments that maintain bunkrooms or "cribs" in each station just for this purpose. As someone else suggested, a smaller department could make use of the firehouse.

                  If I am not understanding this ERT practice, please correct me.
                  Tim Dees, now writing as a plain old forum member, his superpowers lost to an encounter with gold kryptonite.

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                  • #10
                    When things are slow, I turn on the radar and doze in and out sometimes. I work when it's dark out, so It's not really a big deal. Half of the week, when I work for a little city in our county that contracts us, it gets sleepy out there on weeknights.

                    I park in a parking lot, turn the radar on, and let it keep it from TOTALLY falling out. Or I'll go after them if they exceed 15. I've walked up to cars sometimes looking like I just woke up, I was even asked once if I was alright, just said I was "tired". They didn't get a citation..

                    I don't make a habit of it, we don't have kind of sleeping policy, but I can imagine getting chewed out if I ever got caught doing it. Some nights I'm just more tired than others, usually I'm pretty proactive, but some nights 40 winks is in order, and I'll do it if I'm not down cold paper.
                    "I'm the man who invented the wheel, and built the Eiffle Tower out of metal and brawn, that's what kind of man I am. You? You're just a women with a small brain." -Ron Burgundy

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                    • #11
                      My thoughts on it are if you are tired and need a break, take it. I have no problem picking up the slack for someone providing it isn't a daily routine. Lots of the guys I work with have young kids at home so I know they aren't getting much rest between the shifts, especially now that school is out. If it saves me going to their car accident or them making a mistake in the field, I'd rather they take a few z's. I think we've all been there, I'll take a time out if needed too.

                      Managers seem pretty good about it. Mind you it was a lot easier to have cat naps before GPS came out. If our cars are idle too long they check up on us. I'm tempted to try putting a club on my steering wheel, with the wheels turned, in a huge parking lot to avoid this

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                      • #12
                        I imagine anyone that worked the midnight shift for any length of time has "dozed off" at least once. I woke up at sunrise one morning and had a crease in my forehead from the steering wheel. It happens. We all work doubles and get limited sleep.

                        But, there is a big difference between dozing once in a while and coming in every night and just out-and-out sleeping. I know of one person that worked mids and had a second job. He used his LEO job as his sleep time. He got caught a few too many times. Let's just say, he didn't retire from the PD.
                        "Blaming the prince of the fools should not blind anyone to the vast confederacy of fools that made him their prince" - Unknown Author
                        ______________________________________________

                        "That government is best which governs the least, because its people discipline themselves." - Thomas Jefferson
                        ______________________________________________

                        “There are two ways to conquer and enslave a nation. One is by the sword. The other is by debt.” - John Adams

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                        • #13
                          Things happen, and we're only human. Luckily, many supervisors are good about it as long as it's not a common occurence. My supervisor has told us many times that if we ever need to grab some shuteye, just let him know, and that he'll cover us while we go crash at the FD, or in our PD's breakroom. Our FOP lodge is also nearby, and theres a mighty comfy couch in there.

                          Having it be a common occurence is a major safety issue, as well as a moral issue. You're not being paid to sleep. This job isn't that tough to begin with considering we drive around breaking peoples balls and doing paperwork 99% of the time. If you can't stay awake every night for that, go get yourself a security guard gig sitting in a booth somewhere.

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                          • #14
                            Every so often I have to ake the little power nap.I am a very light sleeper and ahve a hard time sleeping duringthe day.So about 4-5 am i start to get pretty sleepy if we are not busy.A quick 10-15 minute nap usually helps.
                            FILL YOUR HANDS!!!

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                            • #15
                              What do you think is more likely? To be shot in the head by someone who wants to kill a sleeping cop, or to drift across the centerline and take out a family of four because you were dangerously tired?

                              I don't see anything wrong with getting some sleep if you need it as long as it's not a daily occurance. Especially if you work rotating shifts and have to double back at shift change.

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