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If 99.9 Percent Is Good Enough, Then …

  • Two million documents will be lost by the IRS this year.
  • 811,000 faulty rolls of 35mm film will be loaded this year.
  • 22,000 checks will be deducted from the wrong bank accounts in the next 60 minutes.
  • 1,314 phone calls will be misplaced by telecommunication services every minute.
  • 12 babies will be given to the wrong parents each day.
  • 268,500 defective tires will be shipped this year.
  • 14,208 defective personal computers will be shipped this year.
  • 103,260 income tax returns will be processed incorrectly this year.
  • 2,488,200 books will be shipped in the next 12 months with the wrong cover.
  • 5,517,200 cases of soft drinks produced in the next 12 months will be flatter than a bad tire.
  • Two plane landings daily at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago will be unsafe.
  • 3,056 copies of tomorrow’s Wall Street Journal will be missing one of the three sections.
  • 18,322 pieces of mail will be mishandled in the next hour.
  • 291 pacemaker operations will be performed incorrectly this year.
  • 880,000 credit cards in circulation will turn out to have incorrect cardholder information on their magnetic strips.
  • $9,690 will be spent today, tomorrow, next Thursday, and every day in the future on defective, often unsafe sporting equipment.
  • 55 malfunction automatic teller machines will be installed in the next 12 months.
  • 20,000 incorrect drug prescriptions will be written in the next 12 months.
  • 114,500 mismatched pairs of shoes will be shipped this year.
  • $761,900 will be spent in the next 12 months on tapes and compact discs that won’t play.
  • 107 incorrect medical procedures will be performed by the end of the day today.
  • 315 entries in Webster’s Third New International Dictionary of the English Language will turn out to be misspelled.

Communicator, (InSight, Syncrude Canada Ltd., Communications Division), p. 6