I Prologue

1 Set Phasers on Stun
Death under a Therac-25 radiation therapy machine.

2 Return from Salyut
Three cosmonauts’ struggle for survival in space.

3. Rental Car
An pilot quickly learns to ‘fly’ a ‘new and improved’ fighter.

4. A Memento of Your Service
The story of the supertanker Torrey Canyon.

5. Chutes and Ladder
A search for the cause of a farmworker’s electrocution.

6. Business in Bhopa
The human factors at play in an unparalleled disaster.

7. Never cry wolf
Technology and human nature make for a prison escape.

8. Leap of Faith
An A320 Airbus demo demonstrates far more than is planned.

9. The Wizards of Wall Street
One key stroke, and a half-billion dollar mistake.

10. Genie in the Bottle
America’s worst nuclear accident.

11. Silent Warning
Thousands die from a chain of communication errors.

12. ZZZs in Zeebrugge
The story of the Herald of Free Enterprise.

13. Double Vision
A fascinating medical misdiagnosis and x-ray machine.

14. That Newfangled Technology
The US Navy’s worst peacetime disaster.

15. In Search of the Lost Cord
Another medical error and a child’s death.

16. An Act of God
The real cause of New York City’s worst power blackout.

17. Tigershark!
The F-20 Tigershark and G-induced loss of consciousness.

18. The Peppermint Twist
An accidental poisoning in a bar in Topeka.

19. The Price of the Amagasaki
A test of new diving technology.

20. Murphy’s Law and Newton’s Law
A design-induced rocket launch error.


SET PHASERS ON STUN and Other True Tales of Design, Technology, and Human Error (2nd edition, 6th printing)


Second Edition * 251 pages * Hard Cover * 9 by 6 inches
ISBN 13: 978-0-9636178-8-0 * ISBN 10: 0-9636178-8-5
Fully Referenced