Publications previously produced by SafeWork SA and ReturnToWorkSA (previously WorkCoverSA) are made available online via this Library catalogue for research purposes only. This title may reference superseded South Australian legislation, include links to web pages that have moved or no longer exist, or may refer to other documents that are no longer available.
Many accidents are said to be due to human error. However, it is difficult to change human nature, so let us accept people as we find them and try to prevent accidents by changing the work situation the plant design or method of working — so as to remove or reduce opportunities for error. This theme is illustrated by describing a number of accidents which at first sight seemed to be due to human error and suggesting ways in which they could be prevented:
A simple slip — forgetting to close a valve — which led to a fatal accident.
An accident preventable by better training Three Mile Island,
An accident due to mental overload.
An accident due to failure to follow instructions.
This paper suggests that while we cannot remove our dependence on people by installing automatic equipment; all we can do is transfer out dependence onto those who design, install, test and maintain the automatic equipment.