A Novel Lesson in (Truckloads of) Consequence

The consequences of human factors neglect in design naturally range in severity by system and environment (think nuclear power-plant meltdown vs. a customer not buying a blender on your website). This video from Failblog.org provides a memorable illustration of consequence… I’ll let you decide where on the continuum of disaster it should fall.

It may seem like common sense to say something went horribly wrong here, but we can narrow it down to at least one of the following areas of design oversight:

1)     Use-cases: Was it considered that trucks might find their way under the bridge?

2)     Messaging: Where signs/roadblocks/warnings/deterrents adequately aimed at trucks and tested for effectiveness?

3)     System Limitations/Standards: Did designers forget to measure the bridge height or take into account standards for underpass height?

4)     Builder Error: Was the height of the bridge misjudged or simply measured improperly?

Regardless, one would think after the string of failures observed at least #2 would be revisited in the short term.  So many flayed trucks, and for what I ask… for what.


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