A Human Situation Awareness Support System to Avoid Technological Disasters

Atlantis Press
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Decision Aid Models for Disaster Management and Emergencies, 2013, 1, pp. 307 - 325
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In many complex technological systems, accidents have primarily been attributed to human error. In the majority of these accidents the human operators were striving against significant challenges. They have to face data overload, the challenge of working with a complex system and the stressful task of understanding what is going on in the situation. Therefore, to design and implement complex technological systems where the information flow is quite high, and poor decisions may lead to serious consequences, Situation Awareness (SA) should be appropriately considered. A level 1 SA is highly supported in these systems through the various heterogeneous sensors and signal-processing methods but, for levels 2 and 3 there is still a need for concepts and methods. This work develops a system called the Human Situation Awareness Support System (HSASS) that supports the safety operators in an ever increasing amount of available risky status and alert information. The proposed system includes a new dynamic situation assessment method based on risk, which has the ability to support the operators understanding of the current state of the system, predict the near future, and suggest appropriate actions. The proposed system does not control the course of action and allows the human to act at his/her discretion in specific contexts.
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