In this book the author applies contemporary error theory to the needs of investigators and of anyone attempting to understand why someone made a critical error, how that error led to an incident or accident, and how to prevent such errors in the future. Students and investigators of human error will gain an appreciation of the literature on error, with numerous references to both scientific research and investigative reports in a wide variety of applications, from airplane accidents, to bus accidents, to bonfire disasters. Based on the author's extensive experience as an accident investigator and instructor of both aircraft accident investigation techniques and human factors psychology, it reviews recent human factors literature, summarizes major transportation accidents, and shows how to investigate the types of errors that typically occur in high risk industries. It presents a model of human error causation influenced largely by James Reason and Neville Moray, and relates it to error investigations with step-by-step guidelines for data collection and analysis that investigators can readily apply as needed. This second edition of Investigating Human Error has been brought up to date throughout, with pertinent recent accidents and safety literature integrated. It features new material on fatigue, distraction (eg mobile phone and texting) and medication use. It also now explores the topics of corporate culture, safety culture and safety management systems. Additionally the second edition considers the effects of the reduction in the number of major accidents on investigation quality, the consequences of social changes on transportation safety (such as drinking and driving, cell phone use, etc), the contemporary role of accident investigation, and the effects of the prosecution of those involved in accidents.

chapter 1|10 pages


part |2 pages

Section I Errors and Complex Systems

chapter 3|24 pages

Analyzing the Data

part |2 pages

Section II Antecedents

chapter 4|20 pages


chapter 5|24 pages

The Operator

chapter 6|18 pages

The Company

chapter 7|10 pages

The Regulator

chapter 8|16 pages


chapter 9|20 pages

Operator Teams

part |2 pages

Section III Sources of Data

chapter 10|14 pages

Electronic Data

chapter 11|18 pages


chapter 12|10 pages

. Written Documentation

part |2 pages

Section IV Issues

chapter 13|18 pages

Maintenance and Inspection

chapter 14|22 pages

Situation Awareness and Decision Making

chapter 15|18 pages


chapter 16|20 pages

Case Study

chapter 17|6 pages

Final Thoughts