IOSH Rail Conference Set for Nov. 9

Speakers at the event will include George Bearfield, director of systems safety and health for the Rail Safety and Standards Board; Johnny Schute, deputy chief inspector of railways for the Office of Road and Rail; and Gary Cooper, director for planning, engineering and operations for the Rail Delivery Group.

The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) is preparing to host its annual Rail Industry Conference, with this event examining what rising passenger numbers and changes in management structures mean for rail companies and the traveling public. How risks are being assessed is also to be discussed during the Nov. 9 event in Nottingham.

"It is pleasing that railways in the UK continue to enjoy a very good safety record. High levels of risks are matched by health and safety management systems, which help to keep people out of harm's way," said IOSH Railway Group Chair Keith Morey. "However, as well as opportunities, change brings challenges. Not least among these are health and safety risks to workers and the public. A key health and safety challenge is that change can destabilize established measures of risk control and maybe introduce new hazards. New organizational forms can add complexity and lengthen lines of communication and accountability, hampering effective risk management. It is crucial that, no matter how rail networks evolve, health and safety remains central to the plans of all route and train operators. Yes, the need for change is imperative, but so is the need for ongoing health and safety management."

Speakers at the event will include George Bearfield, director of systems safety and health for the Rail Safety and Standards Board; Johnny Schute, deputy chief inspector of railways for the Office of Road and Rail, which is responsible for ensuring the mainline railway and London Underground operate networks that are safe for passengers and workers; and Gary Cooper, director for planning, engineering and operations for the Rail Delivery Group.

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