The UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) wished to investigate the 8 hours on / 8 hours off watch keeping system, with the aim of providing an answer to the question
What is the effect of working an 8 hour on / 8 hour off watch keeping system on seafarer fatigue, performance and safety?
The final report outlines the research carried out particularly in relation to the following;
the effect of 8 hours on / 8 hours off on seafarer fatigue and performance
the likely impact on maritime safety
a comparison with other typical watch keeping systems (for example, 4/8 and 6/6)
its suitability as an “acceptable” watch keeping system under controlled conditions