Don't reinvent the wheel; fine-tune it


There is a saying that gets used often: "So this cannot happen again."

To my way of thinking, it is like a parent telling their son that they don't want him hitting his sister ever again. Well, we know how well that works. One of the points I tried to make in an accident investigation meeting was that given enough time, it would happen again unless steps were taken to inform people and to have an evaluation at specific periods of time.

How can I prove that? On a cold, clear night in the north Atlantic Ocean, the ocean liner Titanic hit an iceberg and sank to the bottom of the ocean, taking with it more than 1,100 people. There was a lot of new regulations that were put into place: enough lifeboats and vests for passengers and crew, better ship design, radio monitoring on 24-hour period, iceberg tracking.

This past year, an Italian cruise ship ran aground of the coast of Italy, 100 years after the Titanic. Because it did not sink but came to rest on the rocks below, more than 4,000 people escaped the ship, with a loss of life so far at only 30. This was a ship that had the most modern electronic equipment on board.

A better way to say it would be to say that the incident would be investigated and after some recommendations, implemented. The situation would be re-evaluated periodically. If possible after some evaluation, there may have to be some other fine-tuning done.

Right now, after the Sandy Hook incident, our government wants to reinvent the wheel. Why not review what we already have and fine-tune the areas of concern?

Dave Bensmiller


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