WordPress 5.2 comes with a very useful feature for better error handling called “Fatal error protection”. PHP Error Protection which was original scheduled to release on WordPress 5.1 was reverted due to several security concerns but now has been included in WordPress 5.2.
It’s an administrator focused update that helps in managing fatal errors for less tech savvy users. It protects from WordPress “white screen of death” caused by various reasons. Error protection feature recognizes a plugin or theme causing fatal error and pause it so that admin users can still login to backend dashboard and fix the problem. Without it, we would have to ask website developer to check on the issue and disable the plugin/theme causing issue manually through server.
Now, with any php errors in your website, you will see “The site is experiencing technical difficulties” or similar message on front-end while admin users will still be able to login to the backend but logged in users will see a notification message on top mentioning the website is in recovery mode due to some errors with a theme or plugin. Now, admin users can debug more on it and fix it.