Part 6b: Incident Causation Chronology – A Social Perspective
These ideas can now be diagrammatically expressed to look at the human & social perspectives of incident causation. It will be important to remember that social morals & pressures can influence a wide range of people in society, including engineers and managers who design work systems.
1. Social factors:-
- The environment of peer pressure may influence the thinking of all employees, executives, managers & supervisors and even extend to interfering with their willingness to learn about safety.
2. Fault of Person:-
- Inconsiderate behaviours
- Ignoring safety instructions
- These ideas represent proximate reasons for committing unsafe acts.
3. Chemical, Mechanical, Physical or ‘Unsafe Act’ Hazards:-
- Using hazardous substances when safer alternatives are available
- Standing under suspended loads
- Unguarded chains, gears, moving parts & pulleys
- All of the above contribute directly to incidents occurring.
4. Incident (the event):-
Events such as persons falling off ladders or being struck by flying objects are typical examples that cause injury.
5. Injury (outcome or the end result):-
Fractures, lacerations & fatalities are examples of the observed results directly linked to incidents.
This approach to incident causation differs significantly to an engineering approach which we’ll look at in Part 7 when the two models are combined.