2014-08-01 12:00 - Messages

A visual analytics system for railway safety management

The working environment of railways is challenging and complex and often involves high-risk operations which affect both the company staff and inhabitants of the towns and cities alongside the railway lines. Rail companies adopt several strategies to reduce the exposure to risk of their employees and the public, which involve having trained personnel, safety technologies and work practices. However, despite this, railways remain high-risk operations and unfortunate incidents still occur. In this paper a visual analytics system is employed to help in the management of railway safety. This system is based on a data analytics workflow to compile an incident risk index which processes information that has been collated with regard to incidents along the railway tracks. The results of this data analytics workflow (i.e. incident risk index) are then displayed in a visual form in a geographical map together with socioeconomic information about the towns and cities concerned. Feedback on this visual analytics system suggests that it can be used by safety engineers and specialists when making decisions and communicating these decisions.

Source: Lira W, Alves R, Costa J, Pessin G, Galvao L, Cardoso A, de Souza C. IEEE Comput. Graph. Appl. 2014.

Compaction equipment

Managing user and public safety
This guidance gives advice on the main safety issues at compactors (sometimes referred to as compactor units or packer units) and how the risks can be controlled. It is aimed at employers, managers and supervisors at premises where compactors are used to process materials from a number of different sources. It may also be relevant to users, suppliers, hirers and leasers of this equipment. It focuses on both the risks to users and members of the public, as these units are often placed in areas open to the public.

Source: http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/waste08.htm

The National Tractor Safety Coalition

Taking a new systems-approach to a well-known problem
The agriculture industry is widely recognized for its high work-related fatal injury rates, which are estimated to be 20.2 deaths per 100,000 workers (compared to 3.2 per 100,000 workers for all workers). Tractor overturns are the most frequent cause of farm fatalities, yet they can be readily addressed with the presence of a roll-bar and seatbelt (referred to as a rollover protective structure system or ROPS). Unfortunately, roughly 40% of U.S. tractors lack these protective devices. Older farmers, part-time farmers, and low-income farms are most frequently lacking ROPS protection.

Source: http://blogs.cdc.gov/niosh-science-blog/2014/08/12/rops2/

Identifying patterns of safety related incidents in a steel plant using association rule mining of incident investigation reports

The aim of this paper is to find out the patterns of incidents in a steel plant in India. Occupational incidents occur in steel plant mainly in form of injury, near miss, and property damage or in combination. Different factors are responsible for such incidents to occur. An incident investigation scheme is proposed. Association rule mining approach is used to discover cause-and-affect patterns (rules) using 843 incidents. Thirty-five meaningful association rules are extracted using three criteria, support (S), confidence (C) and lift (L). For example, the results show that unsafe acts done by others are more frequent in injury cases (S = 4.86%, C = 78.8%, L = 2.3). Similarly, one of the SOP (standard operating procedures) related rule: 'SOP required, available, adequate but not complied' led to property damage (S = 11.03%, C = 49.2%, L = 1.525). Another useful rule 'SOP required, available but inadequate, followed' led to near miss (S = 1.66%, C = 38.89%, L = 1.163). It is also found that for slip, trip and fall incidents, workers working alone (S = 3.91%, C = 76.74%, L = 2.239) or in a group (S = 3.20%, C = 75.00%, L = 2.188) does not make much difference. The findings pinpoint the areas of improvement such as inadequate SOPs, non-compliance of SOPs, training, and slip, trip and fall prevention to minimize incidents.

Source: Verma A, Khan SD, Maiti J, Krishna OB. Safety Sci. 2014; 70: 89-98.

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