Risk Management and Human Error in Recreational Boating, Volume 2: Analysis of Human Error in Recreational Boating

This report documents a project to assess the role of human error (HE) in recreational boating accidents. In so doing, it reveals both the dominant role of HE, and the strong relationship between the type(s) of boats involved in an accident and their most important HE causes. These relationships are portrayed in tables that present the results of analyzing over 3,000 accidents that occurred over a recent 3-year period in terms of the HE causes of accidents involving each of 9 standard boat types for which data are available. This outcome is useful in developing safety strategies that effectively impact the most important causes in boating accidents. Related to this, the report also documents the development of a process for determining HE accident cause on a routine basis, as part of a national system of boating accident statistics. The reports of field investigations that form this system flow from the states into a national Boating Accident Report Database (BARD) that is maintained by the U.S. Coast Guard.In recent years, the BARD has developed to the point of including the narratives of investigative reports, as well as standardized accident descriptors, in an electronic form adaptable to automated access and analysis. For the first time, this allowed convenient viewing of masses of reports that included both accident narratives and the standard accident parameters. The accessibility of the narratives added critical information that allowed insight into the human causes of accidents. This discernment was coupled with a HE-accident causation taxonomy which was developed in stages through 4 years of the project to allow methodical coding and automated analysis of accident causes. Stages of development of the HE taxonomy are documented in the report, beginning with over 300 logically implied categories, refined and limited to the most common, re=expressed in terms particular to different boat types, tested in use over the 2002 boating season in six states, and incorporated into a prototype of a Web-based version of BARD. The approach has wider application in transportation safety.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • See also: PB2002-102695, PB2005-100215 and PB2005-100216. Also available on CD-ROM.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Marine Safety Foundation, Incorporated

    Farmingdale, NJ  United States 
  • Authors:
    • McKnight, A J
    • Becker, W W
    • Pettit, A J
    • McKnight, A S
  • Publication Date: 2004-2


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Print
  • Pagination: 70p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01002371
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jul 13 2005 4:39PM