Many factors contribute to fatigue on the water. These include environmental factors such as sun, rain, swell action, heat, cold and vessel movement that all play a part in contributing to fatigue.
In a recent study, conclusive evidence now tells us that a person that has been awake on the water for 17 hours faces the same risk of a crash or injury as a person who has a blood alcohol content reading of 0.05 g/100ml.
Those that have been awake on the water for 24 hours will show boating performance similar to a person who has a blood alcohol content of 0.1 g/100ml.
The one result that is common to fatigued boaters is that it can lead to catastrophic accidents derived from serious lapses in judgement.
Everyone who is involved in boating should take proper rest and breaks to curb fatigue. Helm and crew positions should be rotated regularly with regular rests built into the rotation.
Many boaters underestimate the effects of environmental stress factors such as glare off the water, sun glare and the constant movement of the boat which all contribute to sapping energy levels.