Sample Paper on Human Errors in the Aviation Industry

Human Errors in the Aviation Industry

Many reasons have been cited as main reasons to which airline mishaps can be attributed. A primary contributor among these is a human error that has contributed to more than 70 percent of commercial airplane accidents. Recently, human error has become a major concern in the aviation industry`s maintenance practices. While usually associated with flight operations, human error has also been known to be a major concern in maintenance practices and air traffic management. During maintenance practices, human factors professionals entail the mechanics, pilots and engineers who apply the latest knowledge about the human performance and commercial airplanes interface to assist operators to improve the efficiency and safety in their daily operations (Griffin, 2010).

Humans conduct the maintenance tasks in the aviation industry. They are limited and driven by their unique abilities, limitations, environment, comfort and their ability to utilize machines, systems, and tools to execute such tasks. In cases where maintenance professionals do not have adequate knowledge of how to use certain equipment, the chances are that errors can be created. Such errors may be improper installations, incomplete installations, missing equipment or inadequate fault isolation. This can be attributed directly to training deficiencies.

In an environment where there are no clear guidelines on what job should be done, how and by whom, there is bound to occur misunderstandings. This can be aggravated when there is no particular communication channel and code of engagement. Errors in the maintenance of essential equipment in the aviation industry can also occur especially when conducted by technicians who have been working too long or for some reasons are fatigued. Their judgment is not optimal which may lead to omissions of procedures or installations (Aviation Pros, 2010).

The lack of vital equipment is also another common source of problems in maintenance. For instance, a pilot of a helicopter may have a float for the left wing and a skid to compensate for the right side. This spells disaster during flight and industry players should avoid this by acquiring appropriate equipment in proper quantities. When a particular equipment is not available, flights have to be canceled entirely. During maintenance, when the time is limited, technicians are often pushed and compelled to achieve results in the shortest time possible (Aviation Knowledge, 2014). This may lead to the breach of procedures with the main aim being to eliminate demand pressure. Working under pressure increases the susceptibility to pressure.

For communication, the use of logbooks can ensure the elimination of cases of miscommunication. Confirmation of messages sent and received can be done easily with records. Technicians should also continue seeking new knowledge from vast sources to avoid chances of meeting scenarios that they have never encountered. Technicians and professionals should also rely on manuals to handle situations as opposed to memorizing procedures. Fatigue can be managed by ensuring that any sign of such is detected upfront and arrested before it results in an error. Complex tasks should be avoided when exhaustion is detected. Workers should look out for each other and ensure colleagues are secure from possible fatigue that could introduce errors. Social issues should also be checked to ensure for instance that the pressure that may be experienced by employees is not self-induced (Boeing.com, 2015). This way, human errors in maintenance can be avoided, and higher levels of safety achieved in the aviation industry.

 

References

AviationKnowledge. (2014, January 5). Human error in aviation: An introduction – AviationKnowledge. Retrieved from http://aviationknowledge.wikidot.com/aviation:human-error-in-aviation

AviationPros. (2010, June 8). Teamwork | AviationPros.com. Retrieved from http://www.aviationpros.com/article/10389151/teamwork

Griffin, G. (2010, February 14). Human error is thebiggest obstacle to 100 percent flight safety – The Denver Post. Retrieved from http://www.denverpost.com/ci_14398562

The Role of Human Factors in Improving Aviation Safety – Text Only. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.boeing.com/commercial/aeromagazine/aero_08/human_textonly.html