Safety inspectors forget to replace valve at Piper Bravo oil rig (losing $3.4 billion).
Throughout history, some of the biggest disasters have been caused by something that seemed so simple (at least at the time). There are times when individuals make mistakes, someone slacks on safety or sometimes simple, terrible coincidences cause massive consequences. Basically, one wrong decision led to absolutely disastrous results.
Here are some of the biggest “mistakes” that have ever occurred in history. You may be surprised by the root cause of some of these disasters that resulted in death, destruction and loss of homes.
(Note: the monetary losses cited below take into consideration many things beyond the direct loss)
Tiger Woods chooses to cheat on Elin Nordegren (costing him possibly $12 billion).
Captain Edward Smith crashes and sinks the Titanic (losing $7.5 million and countless lives).
Elderly man throws away winning Euromillions lottery ticket on accident (losing $181 million).
NASA used metric and Lockheed Martin used the English system to build an orbiter together. It was lost in space (losing $125 million).
Faulty equipment causes a stealth bomber to crash on takeoff (losing $1.4 billion).
A hunter using a signal flare starts the worst fire in California history (losing an insured $1.2 billion).
Rupert Murdoch has an affair with Wendi Deng after 32 years of marriage (losing $1.7 billion).
Faulty equipment causes Three Mile Island meltdown (losing $836.9 million).
The Prestige oil tanker sinks off the coast of Spain, killing over 300,000 birds (losing $5.7 billion).
A drunk Captain Joe Hazelwood crashes Exxon-Valdez into Prince William Sound (losing $4.4 billion).
Faulty equipment causes the Challenger to explode on liftoff, killing the 7 crew members (losing $5.5 billion).
Faulty equipment causes Columbia to crash on liftoff, killing its 7 crew members (losing $13 billion).
TEPCO and regulators ignore the Fukushima Power Plant wouldn’t stand up to a tsunami, and it was slammed by one (losing $12 billion).
BP, Halliburton, Cameron or Transocean made a mistake, causing the Deepwater Horizon to blow up, dumping 5 million barrels into the water (losing $40 billion).
Faulty equipment causes the Chernobyl meltdown, killing plant employees, spreading radiation and emptying the town (losing $358 billion).