In baseball statistics, an error is the act, in the judgment of the official scorer, of a fielder misplaying a ball in a manner that allows a batter or base runner to advance one or more bases, when such an advance would have been prevented given ordinary effort by the fielder. This facination with statistics in baseball produces a paradox for many in the field of error management and fatigue risk management. The paradox is this: Why do we have so much interest in baseball player statistics, yet frequently leave unexamined the personal safety statistics of operators in high risk industries, where human lives are often on the line?
Looking at the way in which the individual is held accountable in baseball may offer us some insight into how we should approach self- improvement and fatigue error reduction, or at a minimum, offer us some insight into what was going on that led to the error. Like any great athletic endeavor, each encounter with error or the error producing condition fatigue should be recorded and analyzed. Capturing what was happening, what you did or failed to do (or what someone else did or failed to do), and what happened as a result leads to an understanding of your error patterns and provides the path to the future and avoiding similar actions or conditions. The keeping of statistics on personal fatigue caused errors and analyzing them is a must if we are to improve performance and have an effect on personal and work safety. Since there are systems in place and technology for monitoring available, there is essentially no excuse for not tracking our statistics when the error is attributed to fatigue. The only question here would be – Is your system and technology up to the task?