Today’s LiveWire Spotlight looks at two NERC Lessons Learned – each outlining a root cause strategy that can help identify the factors that lead to a process or equipment failure, and find ways to mitigate them.  The first, “Barrier Analysis” helps investigators assess how inadequate administrative and/or physical controls allowed a hazard to contact a target (e.g.; safety, performance, financial viability, etc.)  The second, “Change Analysis” looks for post mortem teams to cull out the differences between the normal operations and failure scenarios, and determine if any triggered or contributed to an event.

NERC’s expectations of electric system security and performance are increasing over time.  Severe penalties may be levied after an outage if the ERO finds that an Operator is not routinely applying strong analysis methods like these described in the Lessons Learned.