Flawed Assumptions, Models and Decision Making: Misconceptions Concerning Human Elements in Complex System

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The history of high consequence accidents is rich with events wherein the actions, or inaction, of humans was critical to the sequence of events preceding the accident. Moreover, it has been reported that human error may contribute to 80% of accidents, if not more (dougherty and Fragola, 1988). Within the safety community, this reality is widely recognized and there is a substantially greater awareness of the human contribution to system safety today than has ever existed in the past. Despite these facts, and some measurable reduction in accident rates, when accidents do occur, there is a common lament. No matter ... continued below

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7 p.

Creation Information

FORSYTHE,JAMES C. & WENNER,CAREN A. November 3, 1999.

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This article is part of the collection entitled: Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports and was provided by UNT Libraries Government Documents Department to Digital Library, a digital repository hosted by the UNT Libraries. More information about this article can be viewed below.

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  • Sandia National Laboratories
    Publisher Info: Sandia National Labs., Albuquerque, NM, and Livermore, CA (United States)
    Place of Publication: Albuquerque, New Mexico

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Description

The history of high consequence accidents is rich with events wherein the actions, or inaction, of humans was critical to the sequence of events preceding the accident. Moreover, it has been reported that human error may contribute to 80% of accidents, if not more (dougherty and Fragola, 1988). Within the safety community, this reality is widely recognized and there is a substantially greater awareness of the human contribution to system safety today than has ever existed in the past. Despite these facts, and some measurable reduction in accident rates, when accidents do occur, there is a common lament. No matter how hard we try, we continue to have accidents. Accompanying this lament, there is often bewilderment expressed in statements such as, ''There's no explanation for why he/she did what they did''. It is believed that these statements are a symptom of inadequacies in how they think about humans and their role within technological systems. In particular, while there has never been a greater awareness of human factors, conceptual models of human involvement in engineered systems are often incomplete and in some cases, inaccurate.

Physical Description

7 p.

Notes

OSTI as DE00014843

Medium: P; Size: 7 pages

Source

  • High Consequence Systems Safety Conference, Albuquerque, NM (US), 11/15/1999--11/17/1999

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  • Report No.: SAND99-2868C
  • Grant Number: AC04-94AL85000
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 14843
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc627808

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  • November 3, 1999

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • June 16, 2015, 7:43 a.m.

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  • April 11, 2017, 3:27 p.m.

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FORSYTHE,JAMES C. & WENNER,CAREN A. Flawed Assumptions, Models and Decision Making: Misconceptions Concerning Human Elements in Complex System, article, November 3, 1999; Albuquerque, New Mexico. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc627808/: accessed September 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.