May 27, 2009 | Barb Carr

Mountain Lion Escapes and is Shot. Root Cause… Blame the staff!


I read a current event today titled, “Mountain Lion Escape At Great Bend Zoo Blamed On Staff Error”. Now for anyone who has ever read our TapRooT® book Changing the Way the World Solves Problems, this should remind you of the Thailand student’s Tiger and safeguards example. For those just purchasing the book it is in Chapter 10 on page 375.

Here are some of the facts as reported:

1. A double-gated entryway was left unsecured.

2. A 150 pound Mountain Lion with unpredictable and aggressive behavior strayed 150 feet from the cage.

3. Authorities shot and killed the Mountain Lion.

With a TapRooT® root cause analysis we would have to define the worst thing that happened as the incident. Would that be the Mountain lion escaping, being shot and killed, or the fact that the park staff left the cage open? I would define it as the Mountain Lion being killed. Next we would list the events before and following the incident and include as many conditions (supporting facts as possible).

It also helps to determine the hazard (uncontrolled energy), the safeguards (failed, successful, and absent), and the targets. Review the article and see if you can determine these items and what other questions you may have. While the park staff did error in leaving the cage open it took more Causal Factors for this Mountain Lion to be killed.
Read the article here:

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