1.0 INTRODUCTIONIn a world of perceived doubt and danger, the desire for security and safety become dominant concerns of political motivation and action. Against the terrifying forces of instability, rapid revolution and complexity, safety and security, appear to channel a diffuse for greater stability and reliability. Ironically, however, the terms security and safety do not itself possess any established or consensual meaning. Reasonably, they mark the perimeters of highly disputed environment. For how is security to be achieved, for example, Who is to be secured? and against which dangers? Focusing upon any safety and security problem would relief in finding position and argument through careful deliberation of some basic inquiries pertaining to the concepts and nature of safety and security themselves (Nordland, 2007).
Once the concepts of safety and security have been clearly defined, it is possible to think about how to pursue them. Understanding such concepts is necessary, though tough task. A first level of intangibility of these terms appears in the definitions themselves.
Security and safety can mean different things, depending on the context. Their meaning can even changeover from one industry to the other or merge in certain languages (Nordland, 2007). Therefore, this paper is an attempt to discuss their usual meanings and propose possibility of their insignificant nexus.2.0 SECURITYIf one starts thinking about security, a clear starting point might be to ask; what is security? Posing such a question is nothing but unimportant exercise, for, as Von-Boemcken and Schetter (2015) argue that, it already makes an inherent assumption about the nature of security itself: namely that, such a thing as security intrinsically exists. Security, in other words, would mean definite condition of existence that does not dependent on its expression in day-to-day discourse. In a nutshell, to be secured denotes to be undisturbed by danger or fear. As cited in Jackson-Preece (2011), Thomas Hobbes articulates that without security there would be no society, no place for industry, and there would be life that is unsociable. The new Oxford dictionary of English also describes security as the state of being free from danger or threat. Likewise, Baldwin (1997) defines security as a low possibility of damage to acquired values. Similarly, Lawrence Krause and Joseph Nye (1975) posit that security is the absence of acute threats to the minimal acceptable levels of the basic values that people consider essential to their survival. These definitions suggest one clear point, as Jackson-Preece (2011) argues that security is the protection against premeditated accidents, such as attacks from criminals. For example, when an important person travels, there is a convoy of vehicles full of security personnel, armed with firearms to ensure protection from any calamity or intentional attack on the person. In short, this text defines security in line with Albrechtsen (2003) that a favorable definition of security might be: a condition of being protected against planned, malicious and illegal incidents from a broad range of threats, where what is protected is all kinds of values to an organization or individual and incidents happen due to the wish for a desired consequence for the attacker.3.0 SAFETY Contrary to security, at its simplest level, safety entails protection from accidents (Albrechtsen, 2003). This short expression suggests a lot of possibilities attracting a number of issues into the safety field. The new Oxford dictionary, for example, defines safety as the condition of being protected from or unlikely to cause danger, risk or injury (Pearsall and Hanks, 2001). In this definition, safety denotes something designed to avert damage or injury, for instance, safety barrier. In a factory, for example, there are safety procedures that are embraced to safeguard employees working on dissimilar machines. In this case, someone is safe as far as he is protected against danger or risk, and he is not likely to be harmed or lost. Within aviation perspective, safety is the state in which the possibility of harm to persons or damage of property is reduced to, and contained at or below an acceptable level through a continuing process of hazard identification and safety risk management. (ICAO, 2013). This definition implies that the vital goal of safety is elimination of aircraft accidents and serious incidents. 4.0 THE NEXUS OF SAFETY AND SECURITYUsing these definitions, one can appreciate that the differences between security and safety are not amazing. Both are conditions where one is well protected and without risks. The basic idea of both is protecting assets from hazards or threats creating safe or secure conditions. The relationship is that a weakness in security generates increased risk, which in turn creates a decrease in safety. As a result, safety and security are directly proportional, but both are inversely proportional to risk. In spite of the fact that both safety and security aim at creating hazards or threats free condition, security pertains more to protection against criminal activities, while safety skews more towards protection against accidents. However, the differences between being secured and being safe from danger or threat are not easily seen (Pearsall and Hanks, 2001). Being protected leads to a condition of being free from danger or threat, and being free from danger or threat might imply sound protection. Thus, the basic idea for both safety and security is the same. 5.0 CONCLUSIONIn summary, safety and security are concepts that are difficult to define, though, in some circumstances they seem to be different while in some, they seem to mean the same. The paper then discusses the concepts of safety and security. Safety starts with structural design and maintenance to prevent fire or collapse. It manages capacities, ingress and egress in complex space. It also deals with aspects of human behaviors, emergencies and evacuations. Security on the other hand, addresses the prevention and detection of crime, the terrorist threat and the maintenance of public tranquility. Such reflections will serve the purpose of specifying the concepts of safety and security that one intends to use when assessing an objective security or safety conditions.
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