Chapter 1. Technological Disasters: An Overview

Spectacular technological successes worldwide have deflected attention from the high incidence of technological disasters. As technology becomes increasingly complex, technological disasters are likely to increase. Since the Industrial Revolution, we have created a cornucopia of technological systems. Sometimes these systems malfunction, and sometimes these malfunctions result in technological disasters. A technological disaster is one that brings on a major crisis, threatens the viability of a technological system, causes massive losses of life and property, and may endanger the social environment in which it occurs. By contrast, a technological failure is brought on by an unanticipated breakdown ...

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