Thursday, January 21, 2021

Human Factors 7 Ways

 Human Factors 7 Ways

By Catalina9

There are several principles applied to the Safety Management System (SMS) and human factors, or human behavior is one of them. Human behavior is predictable and reliable with common cause variations, but also includes an element of special cause variation, or adaptability, which is often assigned as a common cause variation. Human behavior adapts to how things are done on the job, or what is an expected job performance outcome. In aviation, human error or pilot error was over the years determined to be the root cause of all incidents and an accepted system to eliminate human behavior. When pilots became the root cause all written processes, procedures and checklists were deemed to be infallible within an infallible operations system itself. With pilots as the root cause and their deviation form a perfect system, they became the special cause variation which caused the incident. In the mind of every accident analysts and air operator, they had solved the problem until another unreliable person would show up as a pilot. When human behavior is determined to be the root cause, the root cause analysis took a wrong turn at the crossover point on the infinity path, bypassed several stops and went directly from plan to act. 

An effective Safety Management System is operational infinity.
With the implementation of the Safety Management System the PDCA circle was transformed into the infinity path by the addition of just culture. In addition to Plan – Do – Check – Act, the Just Culture path added Trust – Learning – Accountability – Sharing. This overall path allows for incremental safety improvements by the just culture path and safety improvement oversight by the administrative path. 

With the Just Culture path arrived the seven SMS principles of successful human behavior for a desired outcome in operations. 

The first is the principle of control, or an SMS principle of personnel involvement. A person feels positive about themselves to the degree they are in control of their own destination or their sense of coherence. A person in control of their activities feel happy, are engaged and at peace with themselves. Their contribution to safety on the infinity path comes from within, or internal locus of control. On the other hand, a person feels negative about themselves to the degree to which they feel they are not in control of their own future. A person with an external locus of control feels that other people are in charge of their job performance, such as their boss or their customers. A person with an internal locus of control makes their decision with accountability and within a just culture system.  An interesting point to remember is that a person can give away control to the boss or customers, but they are still responsible for the outcome of their actions. Control begins with thoughts which determine the feelings which then determine actions. When emergencies happen, a pilot who feels scared while flying will make a different decision than a pilot who enjoy flying.

It is not by accident that older airplanes are still flying.
The second is the principle of accident, or an SMS principle of objectives and goals. The principle of accident is completely opposed to the principle of control. We say failing to plan is planning to fail. Since objectives and goals are established a person living by this principle expect goals to happen by accident and that their actions do not affect the outcome. A person living by this principle is apathetic, has lost interest in their job performance, and 


complete their tasks because they have to, and not because their actions affect the outcome. A person living by this principle believes the cards are stacked against them because who other people are or what other people do.  The greatest enemy of human success, or safety in aviation is passivity and when personnel feel passive and helpless. Airports and airlines are very good at setting goals, but then they operate without a goal achievement plan.  Remember, a ship without a rudder drifts completely by the force of the sea, while a ship with a rudder sails straight and true to its destination through any type of sea.

The third is the principle of cause and effect, or an SMS principle of monitoring safety. This principle is that for every effect in operations, there is a specific cause. Everything that happens for a reason even if the reason is unknown. Both success and failure in aviation safety are not accidents but have specific causes. A great rule is that when an airline or airport plan incremental safety improvements is to do what others have done to achieve their goals. Success leaves tracks and when and airline or airport learn what other successful operators did and then do the same thing you, they will eventually get the same result. This principle is nature’s unbiased principle. Nature just says here is the principle, this is the playing field and here are the rules of the game. When the game is played by the principle the outcome is success, but if the principle is ignored, there is failure in aviation safety. An important application of this principle is that thoughts are causes and conditions are effects. Thoughts is a primary moving force in operations, they create the conditions and are affected by communication inputs.   

The fourth is the principle of belief, or an SMS principle of incremental safety improvements. When a person emotionally believe they need to hurry with their tasks, they will hurry and when they believe hurrying will cause errors, they will make errors. Whatever any person believes with emotions, or with intensity, it becomes a reality because that person act on the basis of their beliefs. The more intensely a person hold their belief to be true, the more the belief becomes true. Many things we believe about aviation safety is not true at all. However, once a person has decided to believe certain things are true, they do not see, or accept anything that contradicts it. A blind spot is created. Obstacles to aviation safety are self-limiting beliefs, or that time to perform tasks is a limited factor. Within an effective SMS system any person performs tasks with an unshakeable belief and expectation that they are performing tasks successfully with accountability.

The fifth is the principle of expectations, or an SMS principle of preparation for safety improvements. The principle of expectation are expectations of operational outcome and becomes a self-fulfilling prediction since there is a tendency for human factors to take the path of least resistance to their expected outcome. When the flight crew expects a flight will be successful their attitude towards operations focuses on tasks required for a successful outcome. When their focus is on other things than the successful outcome of their flight, safety critical functions may be left unattended. An airline or airport operator must never consider anything else but to expect the best job performance of themselves and all other personnel and show this by their actions. 

Choices
   The sixth is the principle of attraction, or SMS     principle of a clear commitment to safety. The   principle of attraction is a living magnet, and you   attract into your life the people and the 
 circumstances that are in harmony with your   dominant thoughts. The attention of an SMS 
 manager is drawn to aviation safety issues, while the   attention of an aircraft mechanic is drawn towards   improved tools or repair processes. On the other   hand, achievements of an SMS manager or aircraft   mechanic are elevated for other likeminded to be   attracted to. When driving a vehicle, the colors of   other vehicles are seldom noticed. However, the day you bought a red car, you all of a sudden noticed how many red cars there are on the road. When someone thinks negative thoughts, they will attract negative people into their environment and when thinking positive they will attract positive people. This has become apparent in social media postings where negative thoughts and post are extremely successful. The more emotion that is attached to a thought the greater is the intensity of attraction. An airline or airport striving to be successful achieve success by becoming more like other successful airlines or airports. Major airlines are successful today because they thrived on positive values. Success in airline and airport operations is to attract personnel with a positive attitude. 

The seventh is the principle of correspondence, or an SMS principle of promoting the safety policy. The principle of correspondence is as within so without. A person’s outer world is a mirror and reflects what is going on in the inner world. This becomes apparent in the relationship with operational processes. When compliance and performance is removed from within, it is also removed from the outside world, or how the job is done. This makes human factors, or human behavior a common cause variation as opposed to a special cause, where outside distractions interfered with the tasks. Common cause is fully integrated within the organization and their expectations. Reading, thinking, planning, visualizing, with all these things you can create within your mind a mental equivalent of what you want to enjoy on the outside. Promotion of the safety policy by the accountable executive is an invaluable tool to instill awareness with incremental changes of the world within. A person becomes what they think about most of the time. Everything in the material world began with a thought in the mind of a person and that thought turned into a goal which turned into a plan which began to take physical reality. 

The principle of correspondence is crucial for safety improvements of human behavior, to manage thinking within a just culture and to reduce common cause variations within human factors. 



Catalina9




Friday, January 8, 2021

Run Aviation Safety The Same Way As COVID Safety

 Run Aviation Safety The Same Way As COVID Safety

By Catalina9

You would think it should work and be safe to run aviation safety the same way as COVID safety is run and managed. The public trust COVID processes completely and without concerns. We do not ask questions about experts’ qualifications and we demand that our leaders lead us down the safe path with their proven COVID safety processes. 

A successful process may be applied to other safety concerns and generate a safety outcome. A process that is used to operate a vehicle on icy roads can also be applied to icy runways or icy airplanes wings. The process is the simple plan – do – check – decide – act/adjust process. 

Plan is to establish an objective, which is for the public to feel safe or healthy. Do is to carry out what needs to be done to meet the objective. Check is to analyze data from the previous phase. Decide is to make an objective decision at the fork-in-the-road, based on collected datapoints. Decide is to make an objective decision at the fork-in-the-road, based on collected datapoints. Act, or adjust is to make changes to improve the process. The objective is for the public to feel safe by travelling on a road or runway surface that will provide friction, while it is the opposite for an aircraft wing. The do-phase is to apply the plan and conclude with a check or test of the result. After this data is analysed there will always be a fork-in-the-road, and when arriving here an educated decision is made. As the path continues one direction or another, adjustments or action may be applied to improve the road surfaces or quality of de-icing. The corrective action my be different in these examples, but all processes are the same. Gravel may be put on icy roads, chemicals on icy runways and de-icing fluid on an aircraft. At the end of the day the public feel safe and willing to drive the road or enter an aircraft departing from an icy runway relying on laws of nature to transport them safe to their destination. 

The onset of COVID surprised everyone and there was little or no data available to understand how react to the virus. In aviation there could also come a time when an unexpected or unknown event would take place. An aircraft cold for no apparent reason become uncontrollable, or a runway could be covered by a swarm of insects within a few minutes. 

Parking an airplane is a safety tool to eliminate a risk to aviation.
When COVID hit, everything came to a halt. Applying the same safety principle to aviation when an unknown event hits all flight stops, which was the reaction on September 11, 2001. Within a few days and after the risk was reduced all airplanes were flying again. If an aircraft for no apparent reason becomes out of control, the immediate action could be to stop all flights, since all aircraft are relying on the same laws of physics. When these catastrophic events occur and applying the COVID principle, the next step would be to plan, or define an objective. 

Since the objective is for the public to be safe, continue to keep all runways closed and aircraft parked is accepted by the flying or travelling public since it was widely publicized that there were no other reasons but for their own safety that these corrective actions had to be implemented. This also parallels the plan phase of the COVID attack. Since there is always a hazard involved when an object or person is moving, or moving close to each other, 100% safety was achieved by stopping all activities.   

The do-phase is to apply the plan, which is to communicate to teach the public that it is dangerous and unsafe to be a passenger on an aircraft since the cause or cure has not yet been defined. Time goes on and the flying and travelling pubic accept these conditions as true and stay put. This phase also parallels the COVID process.   

The next phase is the check phase where data collected is analyzed in a statistical process control software. Since there are no flights, the data shows that the applied corrective action works without any other incidents. The experts let the public know that parking the aircraft has been successful for the safe operations of an aircraft. However, since the flying and travelling public were unable to fly, they drove the highway, which resulted in an increase of fatal accidents. Since several of these accidents were cause by passengers who normally would fly, the fatalities were contributed to airline travelers. Since airline passengers now were causing highway accidents, severe restrictions were imposed on vehicle owners and secondary highways were closed. The major highways remained open without restrictions. 

Bird travel routes were not changed after several birds took an airliner down.
At this time about a year had gone by since the first out of control aircraft crashed. Pilots in remote areas had been flying under the radar, but since a policy stated that flying was unsafe a decision needed to be made as to what new safety actions should be. The decision makers had arrived at the fork-in-the-road where a decision of action was forced upon them. Still, without a cure or solution for the out-of-control aircraft it would be a defeat to their integrity if they allowed airplanes to fly again.

The final stage of the process is to act or adjust for continuous safety improvements. A decision was made to continue down the path of compliance enforcement, since it had been successful in preventing aircraft accidents. Enforcement actions would be taken against any pilot flying since there is a possibility that the aircraft could be involved in an accident. It was also decided to enforce penalties if a person who normally would be travelling by air was operating a vehicle on any roads. This final stage also paralleled the COVID process in that enforcement actions are taken against groups of people gathering. 

When applying this process to aviation safety an aircraft would never fly again since the aviation industry and the safety of the flying public is only safe when all aircraft are parked. 

When a root cause is unknown or there is no cure for the failure, two options become available. One is to do nothing, and the other option is to overreact and take extreme actions. The most logical safety option is to overreact to ensure safety. It is easer, less stressful, less work to say no and transfer the risk to someone else than accept responsibility and take measures to mitigate. None of these two options are steps to fulfil the purpose of the objective. What is missing in the equation is a third, but hidden option, which is to assess residual consequences and new hazards by doing nothing or taking extreme measures.  



Catalina9



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