Keywords: commercial fishing, decision making, ethnography, occupational injuries, risk assessment, lobster fishermen
Mapping the risky decision space of commercial rock lobster fishermen
This article explores how commercial rock lobster fishermen from a small fishing town in South Eastern Australia make decisions about two important issues: whether to fish on a particular day and when to wear a life jacket. The analysis of the decisions integrates personal, social and cultural factors into a display of the fishermen's 'decision-space'. The outcome of these decisions has the potential to minimise their exposure to extreme weather events and to reduce the risk of drowning after a fall overboard. By understanding the intimate nature of these decision-making processes, it is more likely that successful occupational injury prevention interventions can be implemented to improve the decision-making process.