As is so often the sad norm, it takes blood to write regulations that improve safety.
In the wake of the latest maritime tragedy on the [I]Deepwater Horizon[/I], I wonder if some sort of Offshore Platform Data Recorder, similar to the VDR for commercial vessels, might be considered useful technology for the future.
Naturally the investigation has a very long way to go to get to the root cause, and confirm or otherwise the endless speculation, but it will be interesting to see the final report and what results.
My own personal, and often cynical, opinion of the VDR is that it is useful and is there for all the right reasons. However, when you peel back the onion all the way, I am not convinced that the lawyers and insurance companies are truly in favor. Sometimes (like nearly all the times!), it is better if they do not know the real cause of an incident, and so can wriggle off the hook.
I guess there are similarities to the fact that not one of us would agree to having a recording device in our cars. If for example, an accident is caused by going over the posted speed limit, then the insurance company has a “get out of jail free” card and the lawyer has no one to sue.