Worksite protection systems in urban rail: organisational factors and human capabilities

The increasing demand in recent times on Australian passenger rail operations to provide higher frequency services over greater portions of their daily timetables has placed significant pressure on safety-critical support activities such as infrastructure maintenance. Fewer and shorter maintenance windows have resulted in significant workload pressures at both organisational and individual levels. These, in turn, may adversely affect the capacity of operators to allocate sufficient time, personnel and resources to the careful planning needed for high level worksite protection such as possessions, and lead to the use of lower level forms of protection. This paper examines the proposition that organisational workload manifests in a similar, yet up-scaled, manner to excessive workload at the individual level through practices and behaviours that may compromise safety through otherwise well-intentioned efforts to provide expedient and economical maintenance services, and explores whether enough is being done to keep track workers safe. Data will be presented from worksite incidents investigation records, qualitative feedback from subject matter experts and anecdotal evidence which point to the nature and extent of these worksite protection demands, responses and limitations. The opportunities to interpret organisational-level work demands in terms of workload identification and management, and proposed solutions to these emerging risks and issues will be discussed.

Media Info

  • Pagination: 8p. ; PDF
  • Monograph Title: AusRAIL PLUS 2019, Delivering growth; creating opportunity; embracing technology, 3-5 December 2019, Sydney, NSW, Australia

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01748332
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: ARRB Group Limited
  • Files: ATRI
  • Created Date: Aug 20 2020 2:10PM