Monthly Archives: June 2015

Complacency, sustaining high standards, controlling risk

Two prisoners in adjacent cells were able to cut large openings in the rear of their cells,  descend four stories into depths of the prison interior over multiple nights to break through a brick wall, cut through a two foot steam pipe twice, and cut through a chain securing the final exit manhole cover.

Over a period of weeks if not months:

  • Guards did not verify human features at night during hourly checks (stuffed sweatshirts)
  • Not inspecting interior spaces of prison, since October 2014 (no alarm system?)
  • Not inspecting prison cells, thoroughly, ever?
  • Prisoners routinely accessed tools stored by contractors, replacing carefully each morning
  • Not changing prisoner cell assignments periodically
  • No audit or review of processes
  • Staff training?
  • Prisoners had access to interior prison space for repair work, and learn about interior
  • Little evidence of random or surprise inspections, audits, or stress testing
  • Staff over-riding established security procedures without notification
  • Increased risk permitting prisoners to wear civilian clothing, have bags in their cells, etc.

Complacency and slipping standards will up-end a project likely at the worst possible time.