Company, reviewed thousands of accident reports completed by supervisors and from these drew the conclusion that most accidents, illnesses and injuries in the workplace are directly attributable to "man-failures", or the unsafe actions of workers. Of the reports Heinrich reviewed, 73% classified the accidents as "man-failures"; Heinrich himself reclassified another 15% into that category, arriving at the still-cited finding that 88% of all accidents, injuries and illnesses are caused by worker errors.
Heinrich's data does not tell why the person did what they did to cause the accident, just that accident occurred. BBS programs delve into the acts that cause the accident. It delves into the workplace; environment, equipment, procedures and attitudes.
Basic Organizational Behavior Analysis is what is used to identify the actions that put the associate in the risk position. Organizational Behavior Analysis has been done for 100 years. Directing the applied research to an organizational application specifically to safety has been going on for around 20 years.
Heinrich published work describing the results that he derived by evaluating the accidents from an extensive data base compiled by the insurance industry. He came to the conclusion that roughly 90% of all incidents are caused by human error. This conclusion became the foundation of what BBS has come to be today. BBS addresses the fact that there are additional reasons for injuries in the workplace: environment, equipment, procedures and attitudes. Behavioral Science Technology (BST), pioneers in applying BBS processes, expanded on this work and identified the "working interface", the point where exposure to injury occurs.
The phrase "behavior-based safety" (BBS) was coined by Dr. E. Scott Geller of Safety Performance Solutions (SPS) in 1979. Dr. Geller and his SPS colleagues continue to implement BBS around the world. Over time, BBS became the catch phrase of the safety systems industry. One of his graduate students and coworkers, Dr. Josh Williams, distilled many of these concepts in his guide "Keeping People Safe: The Human Dynamics of Injury Prevention."