Re: The Lessons of ValuJet 592

Subject: Re: The Lessons of ValuJet 592
From: Jane Credland <circe -at- ULTRANET -dot- CA>
Date: Fri, 29 May 1998 08:59:51 -0500

At 12:00 PM 5/28/98 -0500, Tracy Boyington wrote in response to Wayne

>> I'm not a lawyer, nor do I play one on TV, but it sounds to me as if
>> somebody is off the hook since the warnings and procedures are documented.

>It sounds that way to me too, but that might only be because we're not
>lawyers. :-) What defines "documented?" Yes, the procedures were in
>writing, but I can see a lawyer trying to convince a jury that they
>weren't written to the right reading level, or didn't appear in enough
>places, yada yada yada.

Well, I'm not a lawyer either, although I spent more than a decade working
for them, but Tracy is right. There's a definite argument that warnings
and procedures can be documented up the ying yang, but if the worker can't
understand them, they might as well not exist. The documentation is a
mitigation of the company's damages, but it's not going to exonerate them
from responsibility. The documentation writers are going to come under
fire as well, with a lot of emphasis put on how much audience analysis they
did before writing the procedures.

circe -at- ultranet -dot- ca

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