Sharing ideas on Risk, Human Performance, Teams and Leaders

Tom Henricks

The Columbia Shuttle Accident

Tom Henricks flew four NASA Space Shuttle missions, 2 as commander and 2 as the pilot. He has also served as an F-15 test pilot and F-4 fighter pilot. Tom joined the McGraw-Hill Companies in 2006 and is now president of Aviation Week. Previously, Tom was a Vice President at Bell Helicopter Textron Inc. and the V-22 Deputy Director, an exchange assignment with Boeing Inc. He is also a Six Sigma Black Belt.Tom Henricks flew four NASA Space Shuttle missions, 2 as commander and 2 as the pilot. He has also served as an F-15 test pilot and F-4 fighter pilot. Tom joined the McGraw-Hill Companies in 2006 and is now president of Aviation Week.

Heroic acts of recovery do not mean you have a safety culture. Safety is integral to both technical and non technical issues. It is the non technical issues which create a safety culture and which were at least equally, if not more important, in both the Challenger and Columbia Accidents. The ability and culture of all team members to be able to speak up and be heard. True safety culture is established by individuals and their behaviour, how one acts when one is not being watched. Leaders need to drive behaviour which determines the safety culture.