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HFES News and Bulletin

October Is National Ergonomics Month!
Monday, October 4, 2010

SANTA MONICA, CA – National Ergonomics Month is here again! October is designated by the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES) as a time to remind people – no matter where they live or work – that professionals in the field of human factors/ergonomics (HF/E) have been striving for more than five decades to improve the safety, performance, and comfort of human beings. The goal of National Ergonomics Month is to promote the science and profession of HF/E through teaching, learning, networking, service, and fun.

National Ergonomics Month is centered on grass-roots efforts by HFES members, particularly student members. HFES student chapters conduct wide-reaching HF/E awareness programs. Examples of such successful programs include ergonomics design competitions, contests to identify examples of bad design, HF/E lecture series, demonstration days, and numerous interactive presentations about the field at businesses, schools, and university campuses.

Perhaps one of the most notable recent events to demonstrate the importance of HF/E is the landing of U.S. Airways Flight 1549 in the Hudson River on January 15, 2009. Captain Chesley B. “Sully” Sullenberger was able to safely land the aircraft after both engines were taken out by a flock of geese. He used his intimate knowledge of the technology before him in the cockpit and his own expertise to make good decisions under stressful conditions. Sullenberger, who had studied HF/E while pursuing his master’s degree and had learned about many of the factors that could be involved in such an event, was the keynote speaker at the 2010 HFES Annual Meeting in San Francisco.

Visit the National Ergonomics Month Web site ( to find out how you can help spread the word about how HF/E makes the world a more user-friendly place. The Web site contains an archive of past events, articles related to HF/E outreach, and a list of upcoming events.

About the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES)

The Human Factors and Ergonomics Society is the world’s largest nonprofit individual-member, multidisciplinary scientific association for HF/E professionals, with more than 4,300 members in the United States and other countries. HFES members include psychologists and other scientists, designers, and engineers, all of whom share a common interest in designing systems and equipment to be safe and effective for the people who operate and maintain them. To learn more about HFES, contact Lois Smith (, Communications Director, 310/394-1811, Fax 310/394-2410. “Human Factors and Ergonomics: People-Friendly Design Through Science and Engineering.”


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