The sample of EMP from four states of the FRG (Saxony-Anhalt, Lower Saxony, Brandenburg, and Berlin) was made up of the following:
The average length of service of the surveyed EMP was 12.9 ± 7.54 years (range: 3–35 years). Depending on the operational area (size, location) and operational region (city, country), the average alarm operation frequency (based on 12 h) varied between 2 and 11 alerts, with a mean of 5.7 ± 1.86 alerts. The majority of respondents worked in densely to very densely populated deployment areas (n = 195, 70.6%), and the remainder worked in sparsely to very sparsely populated areas. The average weekly working hours were 51.44 ± 6.39 h (40–96 h/week). A total of 139 (50.4%) respondents worked over 48 h/week (over the permitted legal average working time in Germany).
Classification of EMP into work-related behavioral and experiential patterns
It was possible to assign 205 (74.3%) of the 276 EMP to one of the four AVEM patterns with a “full” (14.5%, N = 40), an “accentuated” (30.4%, N = 84), or a “tendential” (29.4%, N = 81) expression pattern. The subsequent classification of the EMP respondents into AVEM patterns was possible:
Risk pattern A: 40 (19%)
Risk pattern B: 27 (13%)
Risk pattern G: 63 (31%)
Risk pattern S: 75 (37%)
A combination of characteristics from two patterns was present in 18.1% (N = 50) of the total sample, and no assignment to a pattern affiliation could be made for 7.6% (N = 21) of the EMP. The expression of the individual AVEM dimensions in participants with one of the four AVEM patterns is shown in the Supplement (see supplementary information online). “Willingness to work until exhausted” was most pronounced in those classified with AVEM risk pattern A (6.9 ± 1.37 points), which was above the normal limit. “Tendency to resignation in the face of failure” was most pronounced in those assigned to AVEM risk pattern B (5.6 ± 1.31).
Half of the stress factors studied (23 out of 46) were significantly different among the AVEM groups, e.g., physical work (p < 0.027), overhead work (p = 0.003), vibration/oscillation (p = 0.038), shift work (p = 0.049), trouble with superiors (p < 0.001), trouble with colleagues (p = 0.001), pressure to perform (p = 0.012), thinking (p < 0.001), independent division of work (p = 003), responsibility for machines/materials (p < 0.001), and chemical substances (p < 0.001). Therefore, the risk groups with patterns A and B had the highest values for almost all stress factors. The subjectively perceived stressors and the intensity of the assessment of these stress factors differentiated by AVEM patterns are listed in Supplemental Tables 2a, 2b, and 2c (see supplementary information online–Supplement 2a: Physical stressors; Supplement 2b: Organizational and psychological stressors; and Supplement 2c: Stressors due to work environments).
Recovery and stress within the AVEM patterns
The examination of both the main scales of stress and recovery as well as their subscales showed highly significant differences between individuals in the AVEM A and B risk pattern groups and the AVEM G and S health pattern groups (p < 0.001). Here, each of the AVEM risk patterns offered the highest scores in stress and the lowest scores in recovery. The results are shown in Table 2. The EMP with AVEM risk pattern A complained most of “unresolved conflicts—lack of success” (3.1 ± 1.25), and those with risk pattern B complained of “overtiredness—time pressure” (2.8 ± 1.11). For EMP in both risk pattern groups, “success—capability” was the lowest recovery variables (1.8 ± 0.79 and 1.9 ± 0.82, respectively).
Physical, psychological, and social-communicative impairments of the AVEM patterns
The EMP assigned to the AVEM risk patterns had significantly higher physical, psychological, and social-communicative impairments than those assigned to the AVEM health-promoting patterns (p < 0.001). Consequently, total impairments were also significantly higher in the EMP assigned to the AVEM risk patterns than in those assigned to the AVEM health-promoting patterns. The results are shown in Supplement 3 (see supplementary information online).
Relationships of AVEM dimensions with total impairments (KOEPS) and stress and recovery (EBF)
Figure 1 show that certain AVEM dimensions correlated very strongly with the physical, psychological, and social-communicative impairments of the KOEPS or with strain or recovery, but the others did not (e.g., “striving for perfection,” “work-related ambition,” or “subjective importance of work”). In Fig. 1, positive correlations are shown in green and negative correlations in red; the thicker the line, the stronger the correlation.
The “satisfaction with life” dimension of the AVEM was strongly positively correlated with the “recovery” dimension of the EBF (ρ = 0.532) and was moderately negatively correlated with the “general stress—despondency” dimension of the EBF (ρ = −0.468). The distancing ability dimension of the AVEM was also almost strongly positively correlated with the “recovery” dimension of the EBF (ρ = 0.498). Correlations of the total KOEPS scale and the main EBF strain and recovery variables with the AVEM dimensions are shown in Supplement 4 (see supplemental information online).
The AVEM dimensions “willingness to work until exhausted” and “engagement with work” of the main scale were only correlated with the EBF main scales of stress and recovery. The AVEM dimension “resilience in dealing with the everyday stress of work” of the main scale showed moderate to nearly high correlations. “Work-related ambition” was only weakly correlated with the KOEPS “total impairments” dimension. “Distancing ability” was moderately to highly correlated with the “recovery” EBF dimension, moderately negatively correlated with the “total impairments” dimension of the KOPS, and positively correlated with the “stress” dimension of the EBF. All AVEM dimensions of the main scale “emotions associated with work and with life in general” were moderately negatively correlated with the “total impairment” dimension of the KOEPS and the “stress” dimension of the EBF and was positively correlated with the “recovery” dimension of the EBF.