Human Error Essay

2183 Words9 Pages
To err is human. Throughout everyday life, human error is around every corner. Human error is defined as, “a mistake made by a person rather than being caused by a poorly designed process or the malfunctioning of a machine such as a computer.” (Encarta, 2009) To simplify this definition, people make mistakes.
Human error may become apparent in the form of human behavior or conduct that can be categorized as undesirable, unacceptable, careless, inattentive, forgetful, reckless, harmful, a miscommunication, human performance that is extreme in variability or beyond the limits of that expected, or an inappropriate form of risk taking behavior. An error may be harmless, it may be detectable and correctable, or it may serve to predict
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Shift work should therefore not be confused with irregular working hours, where work times vary in an unpredictable, irregular manner (Thierry, 1994).
Shift work can require some employees to work when the majority of people are resting. In some cases, shift work requires rotating between two or three different starting times, which may vary by eight hours or more. The medical community, the transportation industry, utilities, security, and retail sales have traditionally required shift work.
So many industries utilize shiftwork schedules that nearly 15 million full-time workers in the United States work shifts outside the traditional workday, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Yet those added shifts, implemented specifically to increase profitability, actually may be costing companies money through higher worker injury rates (Brogmus, 2006).
While many companies are turning to shift work there seems to be an alarming trend in the influence of night shift and accident rates. Research has proven that those who work night and rotating shifts are almost twice as likely to be injured on the job than those who work normal operating hours.
Although there is some debate about when accidents most frequently occur, there is ample evidence linking non-standard hours of work to serious workplace accidents. Studies show that serious accidents happen more frequently between 2:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m. In fact,
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