SAFETY ENGINEERING

Human error has played a large role in some accidents resulting in deaths and injuries. For example, the Formosa Plastic’s vinyl chloride explosion was primarily due to an operator bypassing and opening a valve at the wrong control panel, resulting in five deaths and three injuries. The company was relying on written standard operating procedures and employee training to prevent the unauthorized bypass of the valve.

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1. To what extent do you think a company should be required to implement engineering controls to prevent a potential consequence that will only occur if human error is present?

2. Who do you think was ultimately responsible for the incident that resulted in the deaths and injuries at the Formosa Plastics facility?

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