Safety and risk management: help or hindrance to innovation?
There is a common perception in industry that safety and risk management can be a blocker to progress and innovation, or that it is a ‘tick box’ exercise to be endured rather than embraced.
Proportionality – avoiding ‘one size fits all’ solutions
Proportionality is a fundamental attribute of modern risk management.
Cyber risk for the rail engineer
Cyber security issues have pervaded almost all aspects of life as daily data breaches and hacked websites testify. In the rail sector, where previously isolated control systems have become connected to the internet, we have seen a new challenge emerge for engineers tasked with ensuring system reliability, availability, maintainability, safety and now security (RAMSS).
Common law – the harmonisation of european rail safety
The Common Safety Method on Risk Evaluation and Assessment (CSM REA) became a legal requirement in July 2012 throughout European member states. It applies to proposers of all significant changes to mainline railways.
Sending the right signals – new signalling technology for the Jubilee Line
On 23 June 2011, a new signalling technology, known as 'moving block', was quietly enabled on the Jubilee Line of the London Underground. While passengers may have been oblivious to this change, the new technology allows the number of trains per hour to increase and journey times to reduce without changing the existing infrastructure - an improvement that will come into its own during the 2012 Olympics.
Periodic review – opportunity or chore?
Good practice calls for a periodic review of major hazard safety cases to ensure that the 'case for safety' remains valid. Indeed, many regulatory regimes and corporate standards have a requirement for 'periodic' or 'thorough' review, and provide guidance on the frequency and content of the review. At first sight, the potentially wide ranging nature of periodic reviews can appear daunting and onerous, with the potential to place a heavy burden on resources. But a well managed periodic review provides a great opportunity to strengthen the connection between the safety case and the real world.
Affordable software safety – more for less
Software is increasingly being used within systems which perform functions important to safety, both for new facilities and in the replacement of existing hardwired systems which are coming to the end of their life. Such systems include fire control and reactor control panels.