Wearable device measures workers’ sleep quality

Photo credit: slworking2 on Flickr

Photo credit: slworking2 on Flickr

Twenty-three fallers in Smith Inlet, BC, Canada are taking part in a pilot study to learn more about how they sleep.

They are wearing watch-like devices – called a Readiband™ – on their wrists for three weeks. The band collects data on sleep quality, and uses it to create a report that will lead to better sleep outcomes for each individual’s situation. I wrote about this recently in my post Find solutions for sleep problems.

“The less sleep you get, the more likely you are to have an accident at work,” said Fatigue Science’s Pat Byrne, also known as the Canucks sleep doctor.

Pat shared these thoughts with me when I asked what he told logging industry delegates at the 2013 Vancouver Island Safety Conference.

“Our message was that the forest industry needs to pay attention to that and start looking at why it’s an issue,” he said, adding that he and his team were working on a project with the BC Forest Safety Council.

To find out more, I contacted the BCFSC, who honoured me with a sneak peak at the upcoming BC Forest Safety News. I learned the aim of the project is to see how the technology works in a forestry setting.

“This is just the launch phase of the pilot. We go in with good expectations, but until
we test and review the findings we won’t know if this is something that makes sense,” said consultant Carole Savage, in Smith Inlet, BC, where the project is taking place.

“We need to gather data, consider what participants say about the experience, and inform industry as to whether it can make a difference to consider as another possible tool for the safety toolbox.”

And so we stay tuned for an outcome. It seems the Readiband™ works for lots of professional athletes, so hopefully it works for the “forestry athletes” who could use more sleep for the sake of safety, performance, and the good feeling of being well rested.

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