This announcement is to inform stakeholders that NERC hosting human performance-specific, in-person and virtual events is paused indefinitely. The uncertainty of the pandemic environment over the past two years presented an opportunity for the Electric Reliability Organization (ERO) to rethink how best to address its role in human performance engagement from a regulatory, reliability and resourcing perspective. The ERO continues to acknowledge human error as an impactful risk to operating the bulk power system and highly encourages stakeholder activity that serves to manage/mitigate the risk. Stay tuned for opportunities to help the ERO determine a way forward.
Human error is often cited as the main cause for up to 80 percent of all incidents and accidents in complex, high-risk systems that exist in the aviation, petrochemical, healthcare, construction, mining, and nuclear power industries. Many of the major events that occur in the bulk power system are initially labeled as being caused by individual human error. When the causes of these human errors are broken down further, they reveal that the majority of the errors associated with events stem from latent organizational weaknesses, which are not attributable to one individual.
People, even the very best people, will make mistakes. We have not fully understood an event if we do not see the human’s actions as reasonable (when they are). Through careful and thorough analysis of events and near misses, and most importantly, the subsequent understanding of the root and contributing causes, organizations can prevent future occurrences.
Sound administrative and cultural controls can withstand human error. However, these controls are weakened when conditions are present that provoke error. Eliminating error precursors at the job site, workplace, or organization reduces the frequency or numbers of active errors. Events can be avoided through an understanding of the reasons mistakes occur and application of the lessons learned from past events and near misses. The systematic investigation and evaluation of events in the bulk power system is uncovering many of the latent errors that are dormant in the system. Through the events analysis initiative and the use of Human Performance analysis and applications, the lessons learned and good industry practices are being applied to further improve the reliability of the bulk power system.
NERC Human Performance Link:
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