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April 24, 2012

“Safety doesn't happen by accident”

People make mistakes, its part of our nature, however some mistakes are more serious than others, and to limit the worst kind of mistakes -the safety critical- companies train people regularly, reminding them of the importance of being alert.

With more practice comes experience, which supposedly reduces mistakes, but here’s the paradox; some mistakes actually occur as a result of experience! How is that possible? Well, because with experience comes familiarity, and “familiarity breeds contempt”, which in turn lowers the person’s guard, and increases the chance of making a mistake.

Experienced people feel safer, and its totally understandable, yet there is a aggregated amount of responsibility that comes with experience; a pilot with 10,000 flight hours should feel confident about his experience, but this confidence shouldn’t blind him, causing him to be careless.

I know this is easier to talk about that apply, but then, “safety is not a gadget but a state of mind.” (Eleanor Everet)

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