Situational awareness

I loved Dr. Rich Gasaway’s work on situational awareness. I believe that the lack of situational awareness is a very common observation on complex emergency scenes, especially in an era when we have people who are ill-fitted for this type of work doing this type of work, where sometimes crews operating under heavy pressure simply run out of brain space to get the stressful, critical decisions right.

So, the following short article in the newspaper, quoted in full, made me laugh:

Three people tried to carjack a man at gunpoint Saturday night, but left the car when they were unable to drive a manual transmission, police said. At about 7:10 p.m., three men approached the victim in front of his home in the 200 block of Hampshire Street as he was unloading his groceries. At least two suspects were armed with handguns, police said.

They pointed the guns at him, demanded his car keys and forced him to the ground.

The suspects then entered the car, which has a manual transmission, but stalled it, got out and fled on foot, police said.

The victim was not injured.

The trio were described as black men, about 20, 5-feet-11, with thin builds.

I’d say that was a good example of a lack of situational awareness.

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