Defence in Depth

Deepwater Horizon oil rig ablaze

Deepwater Horizon oil rig ablaze

"The idea of defence in depth is that we need more than one safety barrier or defence, because each defence is fallible. Since we cannot rely on any one defence, we must do our best to make sure that all the defences are functioning as well as possible." Professor Andrew Hopkins

On the 20th of April 2010, the Macondo blowout in the Gulf of Mexico became the biggest oil spill in US history. Five million barrels of oil is the rough estimate, about twenty times the size of the Exxon Valdez oil spill in Alaska in 1989. Apart from being an environmental catastrophe, the Macondo was also a human disaster with 11 people killed.

The real causes of the accident are the human and organisational factors which we find at work in many other big accidents.

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