March 16, 2008 | Barb Carr

Natural Disasters and RCA

Sadly two people lost their lives this Friday from a tornado in Atlanta. Returning from a very energetic 5-Day TapRooT® Advanced Root Cause Analysis Team Leader Training, I thought about the fact that we include natural disasters and sabotage in our root cause process.

Yes, you can’t prevent an external event such as a tornado, but this should not be the focus. What human engineering and training were developed to improve the odds of survival? Do you think the thought, “we never or very rarely have tornados here, so we did not plan for this” occurred? I have heard this statement too many times concerning hazard assessments. If this sounds familiar to you in your company, are you performing robust proactive audits? If you jump from identifying issues and go straight to corrective actions, you are not doing justice to your time spent. These typical types of audits are often led by prioritizing a single problem and deciding on the best feel-good or disciplinary action. If you want to stop this poor practice, call System Improvements, Inc. at 865.539.2139.

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