Open Access Open Access  Restricted Access Subscription or Fee Access

Management of inquiries into disasters: Experts’ views and perspectives

M. S. Aini, PhD, A. Fakhru’l-Razi, PhD

Abstract


In most democratic countries, inquiries are conducted into major accidents. One of the main functions of inquiries into disasters is to establish the causes and to learn lessons from them so as to prevent a recurrence. However, previous studies showed that the learning aspect is often curtailed because of the inadequate guides to the conduct and procedures of inquiry management. A study was conducted to determine the disaster experts’ views and perspectives on management of disaster inquiries. A sample of 80 experts representing various organizations in Malaysia was selected using judgmental sampling method. The data indicated that they were less agreeable with regards to statements about recommendations and learning aspects as compared with function and procedural issues. Suggestions for improvements of inquiry management into disasters were discussed and proposed. Inquiry into disasters is costly to manage and may last from a few months to a few years; thus, these shortcomings ought to be addressed as they will remain as one of the valuable sources of information for society and corporations to learn from past incidents.

Keywords


disaster, public inquiry, accidents, tribunal

Full Text:

PDF

References


Sagan SD: The Limits of Safety: Organizations, Accidents and Nuclear Weapons. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1993.

Wells C: Inquiring into disasters: Law, politics and blame. Risk Manag. 1999; 1(2): 7-19.

Hutter BM: Public accident inquiries: The case of the railway inspectorate. Publ Admin. 1992; 70(2): 177-192.

Gillingham DW, Blanco J, Lewko JH: An integrated model of error management. Int J Disast Prev Manag. 1997; 6(3): 166-190.

Kletz TA: Disaster prevention: Current topics. Int J Disast Prev Manag. 1996; 5(2): 36-41.

Toft B, Reynolds S: Learning From Disasters: A Management Approach, 2nd ed. London: Perpetuity Press, 1999.

Council on Tribunals: Advice to the Lord Chancellor on the Procedural Issues Arising in the Conduct of Public Inquiries Set Up by Ministers. London: HMSO, 1996.

Salmon Report into Tribunals of Inquiry: Royal Commission on Tribunals of Inquiry Report of the Commission Under the Chairmanship of the Rt. Hon. Lord Justice Salmon. London: HMSO, 1966.

Turner BA, Pidgeon NF: Man-Made Disasters. London: Butterworth Heinemann, 1997.

Donahue AK, Tuohy RV: Lessons we don’t learn: A study of the lessons of disasters, why we repeat them, and how we can learn them. Homeland Secur Aff. 2006; 2(2): 1-28.

Drogaris G: Major Accident Reporting System: Lessons Learned From Accidents Notified. Netherlands: Elsevier, 1993.

Elliot D, McGuiness M: Public inquiry: Panacea or placebo? J Contingencies Crisis Manag. 2002; 10(1): 14-25.

Lost in Care Report: Report of the Tribunal of Inquiry Into the Abuse of Children in Care in the Former County Council Areas of Gwynedd and Clwyd Since 1974. Richmond: Department of Health, 2000.

Report of the Presidential Commission on the Space Shuttle Challenger Accident: Report to the President by the Presidential Commission on the Space Shuttle Challenger Accident.Washington, DC: 1986. Available at http://history.nasa.gov/rogersrep/genindex.htm

Howe G: Inquiries After Homicide. Peay J (ed.). London: Duckworth, 1996.

Bristol Royal Infirmary Inquiry: Final Report, Learning From Bristol: The Report of the Public Inquiry Into Children’s Heart Surgery at the Bristol Infirmary 1884-1995. Command Paper: CM5207. Available at http://bristol-inquiry.org.uk/index.htm. Accessed September 3, 2002.

Aini MS: Development and Application of Malaysian Socio- Technical Disaster Model [dissertation]. Serdang, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 2006.

Clarke, Rt. Hon Lord Justice: Thames Safety Inquiry: Final Report. Cm 4558. London: HMSO, 2000.

Howe G: The management of public inquiries. Paper presented at the British association Annual Festival of Science, Cardiff, UK, 1998.

Arata CM, Picou JS, Johnson GD, McNally TS: Coping with technological disaster: An application of the conservation of resources model to the Exxon Valdez oil spill. J Trauma Stress. 2000; 13(1): 23-39.

Johnes M: Aberfan and the management of trauma. Disasters. 2000; 24(1): 1-17.

Dajer A: The lessons of September 11th. Top Emerg Med. 2002; 24(4): 7-11.

Collogan LK, Tuma FK, Fleischman RF: Research with victims of disaster: Institutional Review Board Consideration. Ethics Human Res. 2004; 26(4): 9-11.

Hertsgaard M: Bhopal’s legacy. The Nation. 2004; 278(20): 6-8.

Bogner MS: Stretching the search for the ‘why’ of error: The systems approach. J Clin Eng. 2006; 27(2): 110-116.

Turner BA: Man-Made Disasters. London: Wykeham Publications, 1978.

Brinkerhoff RO, Brethower DM, Hluchyj T, et al.: Program Evaluation. A Practitioner’s Guide for Trainers and Educators. Boston: Kluwer-Najhoff Publishing, 1986.

Sekaran U: Research Methods for Business. A Skill Building Approach, 2nd ed. New York:Wiley, 1992.

Babbie E: The Practice of Social Research. Belmont:Wadsworth, 1992.

Bryman A: Social Research Methods. New York City: Oxford University Press, 2001.

Howe G: The Management of Public Inquiries. Pol Q. 1999; 70(3): 294-304.




DOI: https://doi.org/10.5055/jem.2008.0036

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.


Copyright (c) 2018 Journal of Emergency Management