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Learning from Events Week with Network Rail

Finding new ways to bring safety to life

Learning from Events Week with Network Rail

Every year Network Rail hosts their ‘Learning from Events Week’ in Scotland. We support this and use the opportunity to review our close calls and discuss how we can enhance safety and environmental standards to keep our people and our rail networks safe and efficient.

We decided to hold safety stand downs to generate conversation with our operatives about plant and people interface.

At a scour protection site Shankburn, Colin Christie held a session with Stephen Curren from Network Rail and supply chain partners SAS sub-contractors participating. There were active discussions about behaviours and how these can influence the way we work, about pressure to complete on time, understanding our 'Change=Stop' approach and use of 'point of work risk assessment' (POWRA) as a check before starting work.

Thanks to our site team for understanding the value in using their time to helping improve safety for all and thank you to Stephen for his participation and support.

Garrow Hill Station project team had a stand down hosted by Matthew Martin who is the work site agent. Joining the briefing was SES (RRV supplier), CK contracts and Masonry Solutions. The project is a platform renewals project.

Feedback from this briefing was that everyone understands the procedures we have in place to prevent incidents happening. However it was felt that; time constraints due to short possession times, lack of physical work space and pressure to complete quickly does have an impact.  In addition familiarity from working at the same location can lead to complacency.

The group also carried out a practical exercise asking attendees to stand where they thought the safest place was around the RRV. They all stood outside what would have been the danger zone but they all agreed that implementing that out on site is a lot more difficult.

  Our site at Mill O Kier talked about:

  • What individuals have done before
  • What they  would do now
  • What they could do as a team
  • How we stop incidents
  • Blame culture
  • Accidents
  • Behavioural culture
  • Operation of machines and blind sides

The stand downs in support of ‘Learning from Events Week’ have been really useful for us in capturing how our front line operatives feel about plant and people interface. We'll use this feedback to help guide improvements to our processes and training plans.


operatives demonstrating their understanding of plant people interface
Ninewells site safety session
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