1st Edition

Managing Maintenance Error A Practical Guide

By James Reason, Alan Hobbs Copyright 2003
    200 Pages
    by CRC Press

    200 Pages
    by CRC Press

    Situations and systems are easier to change than the human condition - particularly when people are well-trained and well-motivated, as they usually are in maintenance organisations. This is a down-to-earth practitioner’s guide to managing maintenance error, written in Dr. Reason’s highly readable style. It deals with human risks generally and the special human performance problems arising in maintenance, as well as providing an engineer’s guide for their understanding and the solution. After reviewing the types of error and violation and the conditions that provoke them, the author sets out the broader picture, illustrated by examples of three system failures. Central to the book is a comprehensive review of error management, followed by chapters on:- managing person, the task and the team; - the workplace and the organization; - creating a safe culture; It is then rounded off and brought together, in such a way as to be readily applicable for those who can make it work, to achieve a greater and more consistent level of safety in maintenance activities. The readership will include maintenance engineering staff and safety officers and all those in responsible roles in critical and systems-reliant environments, including transportation, nuclear and conventional power, extractive and other chemical processing and manufacturing industries and medicine.

    Contents: Human performance problems in maintenance; The human risks; Fundamentals of human performance; The varieties of error; Local error-provoking factors; Three system failures and a model of organizational accidents; Principles of error management; Person and team measures; Workplace and task measures; Organizational measures; Safety culture; Making it happen: the management of error management; Index.


    Alan Hobbs is currently a Senior Research Associate, San Jose State University Foundation at the NASA Ames Research Center, California. For over ten years Alan Hobbs was a human performance investigator at the Bureau of Air Safety Investigation (now part of the Australian Transport Safety Bureau. he has investigated aviation, rail and maritime accidents and has advised on safety issues in mining and manufacturing industries.

    "...very readable and comprehensive book...This book is a valuable tool for maintenance and engineering professionals."

    - Danny Azavedo, Maintenance Engineering Society of Australia

    "Excellently explained and illustrated throughout, this is ideal reading and reference material for the eager, curious and dedicated safety professional."

    - Occupational Safety and Health Journal, October 2003

    "Concepts are clearly explained throughout, rendering this one of the most practitioner-friendly books I have read for some time. This is an important achievement, for in the high-pressure world of maintenance managers, supervisors and workers need to be able to get at and assimilate useful information quickly. ...It is lucid, accessible and logically structured..."

    - Risk Management: An International Journal, 2004

    "...written by two world renowned experts, its contents are applicable to all technologically driven industries. The reader will find it rewarding and it will undoubtedly provide a valuable resource for the understanding and investigation of human error contribution to accidents...should be recommended reading for all involved with management, supervision, training and front line duties involving maintenance, repair and overhaul activities."

    - The Aerospace Professional July 2004

    "...a concise book intended for those in the industry who manage, supervise or carry out maintenance activities. Written in a clear style that should be readily grasped by many people in industry...provides a useful, comprehensive and robust overview of the varieties of human error and factors that promote them. The authors offer practical guidance in managing maintenance error in the form of principles for managing the person, team, workplace, task and organizational aspects of maintenance. Although the stated audience for this book is the maintenance community, human factors practitioners will find a good foundation from which to consider maintenance errors."

    - Ergonomics in Design 2004