Review the following website articles: https://ergoweb.com/lessons-from-the-bp-oil-spill/

The articles document BP’s systematic breakdown in their corporate decision making, risk management, and corporate culture.  Professional ergonomists recognized these trends as macro-ergonomic concerns.

Also, review the following website article: http://www.ehstoday.com/safety/news/workplace-safety-leading-edge-culture-accountability-7790

This is a very comprehensive explanation of the nuts and bolts of effective accountability, and how companies might build a culture of accountability.

Remember: Accountability is not about blame … blame and punishment happen, but it does not make an effective culture of accountability.  All of the finger pointing in the world will not fix BP’s internal problems, nor will it identify the underlying root causes of the accident.

“What do you want me to do, save money or save lives? You can’t have it both ways.” This quote comes from a frustrated manager who feels whipsawed by these competing values.  Of course he knows the company line, “Safety comes first,” but then he adds, “But we’re not in business to be safe.  We’re in the business to build product.”

Bush states that you can have it both ways, and that you will find that you will be more successful at building product – or extracting, refining, and selling petroleum based products in BP’s case – if you follow these philosophically simple, albeit operationally challenging steps:

  1. Management Leadership
  2. Respect for People (employees, customers, suppliers, stakeholders, communities)
  3. A Scientific Approach to Continuous Improvement (e.g., Plan-Do-Check-Act, Standardized Methods)
  4. Cross-Functional Cooperation and Teamwork
  5. Training, Knowledge and Skill Development
  6. Responsibility and Accountability (throughout the organization)

Take this thought – Ergonomics is Continuous Improvement and Respect for People.

Essay Assignment – 750 words minimum.  

Discuss whether or not in your opinion ergonomics is more than just the prevention of Musculoskeletal Diseases and answer the following questions:

  1. Is ergonomics more than just the prevention of Musculoskeletal Diseases?
  2. How is ergonomics continual improvement?
  3. How is ergonomics respect for people?
  4. Can ergonomics and human factors prevent situations such as the DeepWater Horizon from occuring?
  5. BP cannot go back and undo the damage that is done, however they can take the lessons learned and move forward.  Identify the lessons learned and how these could move a company forward avoiding problems far worse than a poor safety record.

APA Format is required.  IF you do not know how to write an APA formatted paper, use this link – https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/01/

Ensure you have used clear headings for each of your paragraphs – do not use just the questions listed above.

You should have at a minimum 7 paragraphs:

  • Introduction
  • 1-Paragraph for each of the questions listed above.
  • Conclusion

Your response should be a minimum of 750 words in length. You are required to use at least your module readings as source material for your response. All sources used, including the the module readings, must be referenced; paraphrased and quoted material must have accompanying citations.

The application of the APA writing style shall be practical, functional, and appropriate to each academic level, with the primary purpose being the documentation (citation) of sources. The Occupational Safety and Environmental Technology Department requires that students use APA style for certain papers and projects.

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