Essay: James Reason’s view of Human Error

Sample Essay

James reason has identified and elaborated upon human error in his book, The Human Contribution: Unsafe Acts, Accidents and Heroic Recoveries (Reason, 2008). Perspectives in this regard include and incorporate contextual factors, process factors, action-based taxonomies and cognitive factors amongst others.

James Reason also considers human error to be either one of omission of a necessary step, intrusion of an unwanted action in a predefined process, unnecessary repetition of action, execution of inappropriate process on an otherwise right object, failing to carry out actions in sequence or unintentionally merging two or more stages in a process sequence where each is meant to serve a different purpose.

Reason presents human error as an elaborate relationship between the human engaged in work and his/her surroundings. The error, in addition, is highlighted to take place as a result of multiple causes. I consider this position on human error to be fully justified since human error tends to take place as a combined result of the variables present in a scenario. Also, I consider Reason’s version of the vulnerabilities that cause human error to take place to be appropriately suited to the definition of human error. This is because he has been careful to identify human errors taking place as a result of a flawed system and human errors taking place as a result of an oversight distinctively.

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