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Subject:Procedures in real time From:Jan Cohen <najnehoc -at- yahoo -dot- com> To:techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com Date:Thu, 17 Jun 2010 14:22:55 -0700 (PDT)
First there is the BP disaster, where investigations seem to have found serious fault in documented procedural and reference information. Then, in a news article I read this morning, while passengers were disembarking, an aircraft lost one of its entrance doors while "parked" at a terminal because the aircraft wasn't chocked by its ground crew. Both make me think about what goes into the development and documentation of procedural information to prevent these sort of mishaps or what to do should they occur. They also make me think about how best to put such information to practical use and how to ensure those who would use such information are thoroughly familiar with it and understand *how* to use it.
In the case of the BP disaster, it's fairly evident that little could be done to prevent the loss of life and equipment that occurred at the time of the blow out; but it's not so evident that more couldn't have been done in the days and weeks immediately following the incident to help stem its aftermath. That is, had BP (and we) been properly prepared for such from a logistical point of view. Given the scope of the problem though, such preparedness certainly would cost vast amounts of money and resources to implement such that sufficiently timely responses might occur. It would also require a major change in mindset that *many might not have been previously willing to accept* in these times of minimizing costs and maximizing earnings. Which leads to the question as to whether we will eventually learn what we need from the BP disaster such that it will help minimize similar damages in the years ahead; sorely needed lessons in many aspects.
As for the incident with the aircraft door, that one's a bit simpler to crack. I parked fighter jets during my time in the Air Force and if one thing was written in stone it was the need to chock the aircraft tires and insert the locking pins in the aircraft struts when the aircraft reached its parking position. This information was thoroughly documented in checklists that we more or less knew by heart--regular training ensured such. So I can't help but wonder how in the world this most critical step was overlooked in this recent event. Cutting corners? Lack of supervision? Understaffed and overworked?
They say s**t happens. Well it happened and yup, we're now up the claim of 2.5 million gallons a day, destruction of the environment to almost unimaginable proportions, and what looks like the loss to many of their ways of life. Thank God nobody fell to the ground when that airplane rolled 200 feet forward.
I think I'll go out and buy an iPad now. I bet you its user guide reads great and is chock full of pretty pictures.
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