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Complaints of ‘fatigue’ over new shift
11:00am Wednesday 19th September 2012 in News
POLICE Federation bosses say talks will continue with management at Thames Valley Police after shift pattern changes left some officers feeling “fatigued”.
A switch in shift patterns was introduced in January across Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Buckinghamshire so that each 24-hour response unit would be working at the same time across three counties.
But some officers say the new five-week pattern, which starts with a week of late and night shifts, leads to tiredness. Before the new system was introduced, there were five different shift patterns across the force, and officers worked six days on, then four days off — two early shifts, two late shifts and two night shifts followed by four lieu days.
A survey of about 500 officers, conducted in July and August, shows some officers are unhappy with the new rota.
Federation secretary Andy Viney said: “It’s looking like most officers find the shift pattern increases fatigue, mainly through a week of long hours which upsets the work-life balance.
“We want to look closely at the results of the survey and work with the force to resolve some of the issues.”
Chief Supt Baldwin said: “The new shift pattern is about Thames Valley Police making sure that it has the right number of officers in the right places, in order to protect the public and fight crime.
“We will monitor it to see if further improvements can be made and this will include consideration of the views.”