Risk, Errors & Accidents

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  • Risks, Errors & Accidents
    • Risks
      • Acceptance of Risk
        • Consequences
          • If the consequences are long term, we accept the risk
            • e.g. Smoking
        • Controlability
          • If its out of our control, we accept risk
            • e.g. The risk of pollution from air
        • Knowledge
          • If we know little about the situation
            • e.g. Nuclear power plant
      • Risk Homeostasis & Target Risk
        • Everyone has an internal acceptable level of risk
        • If something is easy, greater risk is accepted. If it is hard, less risk is accepted
        • Wilde (1982)
        • An equilibrium of perceived risk needs to be maintained
        • Shared Space
          • Monderman (1991)
          • Removed traffic lights, road separators
          • People perceived more risk so they drove more carefully
      • Risk Compensation
        • The adjustment of people's behaviour in response to perceived level of risk
        • Seatbelts
          • Janssen (1994)
          • Compared data from people who habitually wore or didnt wear seat belts
          • Those that wore seat belts tended to drive more recklessly, maintaining level of casualties between the two
        • Such theories have been criticised, saying there is little evidence to support
          • Ruedl et al (2010)
      • Definition
        • The probability (perceived likelihood of an event/condition
      • Violation in the Workplace
        • Looked at violation in the workplace of offshore oil rig workers
        • Patrick Hudson (1998)
        • Found 4 types of people that responded to risk
        • Wolves in sheeps clothing are most dangerous as we do not know when they will violate next
        • People take risks because..
          • They feel powerful enough
          • There arnt enough rules
          • There are opportunities for shortcuts
          • Rules must be bent for work to be done
    • Accidents
      • Characteristics
        • Low expectancy to occur
        • Low chance of avoidance
        • Unintended
        • Something is damaged
      • Personal Blame
        • Accidents are the result of the inadequacy of humans that attempt to adjust to a particular set of circumstances
        • Ardous & Kerrick (1951)
        • Accident Proness
          • Some people are more accident prone than others
          • The young and inexperienced or the old and slow etc
      • Sequential Theories
        • Domino Theory
          • Heinrich (1932)
          • All factors are dependent on the preceding factor
          • Injury occurs due to accidents, which occur due to mechanical or personal hazards which occur due to careless persons or faulty equipement
        • Human Factors Theory
          • Accidents occur after a chain of events set off by human error
          • Human error occurs due to overload, inappropriate activities, inappropriate responses
      • Multi-factorial Theory
        • Reese (1990)
        • The 'Swiss Cheese' Model
        • This model assumes that there are always hazards waiting to become accidents
        • We should design systems with multiple layers to prevent them from occuring
        • However, if there is a clear accident trajectory through the layers, an accident will occur
      • Definition
        • The unplanned outcome of inappropriate behaviour or faulty machinery
        • Brown (1976)
    • Errors
      • Types
        • Omission
          • Leaving out a step or a whole task
        • Comission
          • Sequence
            • Tasks are done in the wrong order
          • Timing
            • A task is executed before or after it is required
          • Selection
            • Using the wrong controls
          • Quantity
            • An inadequate amount or excess of something
        • Swain & Guttman (1983)
      • Dealing with them
        • Selection
          • Reducing errors by selecting the right sort of people for the job
        • Training
          • Altering their risk perception
          • Reinforcing good behaviour
        • Design
          • Making it as fail safe as possible
          • But all errors cannot be accounted for
      • Human reliability is studied
      • Technique for human error-rate prediction involves identifying human errors
      • Once errors are identified, possible changes to the system are made

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