I have been teaching the three basics of risk science for a long time now: you have to have energy for damage to occur; the process of damage takes some time and this allows us to understand the anatomy of that process (and this is what good scientists do in other sciences); the process is uncertain and this gives rise to Risk.
It has always fascinated me that in nearly all cases (see comment below) students with no prior exposure to ‘safety’ ideas in industry just accept the whole argument and the theory and have very little trouble applying it. On the other hand, students who have been exposed to safety programmes in industry struggle greatly to not think in terms of accidents, cause and negligence. The ease with which they say the Mechanism of an Event was negligence of someone is amazing. This is despite oft repeated warnings that a Mechanism is not a cause or a failed control measure.
I have also noted what appears to be a cultural influence – people with no prior exposure to the safety field either through study or through industry experience and who are from the Indian sub-continent are often deeply imbued with cause and negligence ideas. It would be so interesting for a social scientist to explore the origin of these beliefs across different cultures.