I re-read this NTSB story a couple times and it still left me scratching my head…installing cameras will prevent what?
The USA Today article stated:
The NTSB found that the Sept. 12, 2008, crash between commuter and freight trains that killed 25 people was caused by an engineer who sped through a stop signal as he was texting. The engineer, who died in the crash, had been warned about cell phone use on the job twice before.
Accident investigators uncovered such egregious behavior by train operators in the fatal 2008 accident near Los Angeles that they suggested Thursday that all railroads monitor crews with video surveillance.
So the NTSB is suggesting that railroads have “people” monitor “crews” with video surveillance to improve safety? Cameras would have prevented this?
Safety is about people. Managers need to ensure crews understand situational awareness, safety and risks on an ongoing basis. Managers need to ensure crews understand and accept accountability for their roles and responsibilities on an ongoing basis. Managers need to respond to “red flags” and enforce consequences for safety violations to prevent expensive, embarrassing and fatal incidents.
In this situation, this train engineer had been warned about cell phone use twice making this train engineer a risk that managers should have addressed as part of their roles and responsibilities.
More technology is not the solution. Hundreds and hundreds of lessons learned reveal that “people” with situational awareness and accountability are more effective than more “devices”.