Tuesday 5 March 2013
Rail Safety / Human Factors

Opening of the 4th International Rail Human Factors Conference in London

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The 4th International Rail Human Factors Conference opened this afternoon in London at the CBI Conference Centre. Organised by RSSB, Network Rail and the University of Nottingham, and with the support of UIC, the conference will last until the afternoon of Thursday 7 March.

This conference is the leading forum to bring together those in the rail industry needing to apply the expertise, methods, tools and knowledge of rail ergonomics/human factors with the established and ever growing group of scientists, consultants and regulators worldwide who provide the expertise and knowledge.

The first three International Conferences on Rail Human Factors were held in York in 2003, London in 2005 and Lille in 2009. These conferences, other events and publications in the last few years have shown that there is a rapidly expanding, knowledgeable and vitally important Rail Human Factors community within the industry, academia and consultancies. The common concern is to investigate, understand and design for people in the railways – staff, passengers and the general public and all industry partners – in order to achieve safe, reliable, efficient and cost-effective rail systems development and operations. The aim of this conference is to provide a forum to bring the various interested groups together and for them to exchange current and likely future Rail Human Factors analyses, tools, designs, investigations, knowledge and standards.

The first day of the conference saw the participation of leading authorities in the area, infrastructure owners and operating companies, contractors and suppliers, regulators, consultancies, research institutes and leading universities. These included Mr Ron Hartman, Veolia Transportation Executive Vice President, Rail Division, USA, who presented the subject: “Staying Focussed and Staying Safe: Research to combat distraction among drivers and the resulting training programme.”

The following days will also be an opportunity to update knowledge and also to become part of the ever-growing network of Rail Human Factors specialists, clients/users and other interested parties. Researchers will learn from the industry about the current needs for human factors knowledge, tools and guidance, and industry will be exposed to current thinking and outcomes of high quality research and practice from around the world.

The programme will feature high-level speakers. Mr Christian Neveu, SNCF, and Head of the UIC Human Factors Working Group, will deliver the Keynote Speech on the Second Day of the conference: “Safety: Progress through in-the-field experience.”

Two technical visits will be organised on the afternoon of Wednesday 6 March, the first one to London Underground’s training centre in West Kensington, and the second one to the Victoria Line Service Control Centre at Osborne House.

The Third Day Keynote address will be presented by Dr Stephen Popkin, Director of the Human Factors Research and System Applications Center of Innovation, Volpe National Transportation Systems Center, USA, on “An Interdepartmental Approach to Safety: How the U.S Department of Transportation is Supporting Railroad Operational Safety”.

For further information please consult: http://www.railhf2013.org

UIC Safety Unit Contact: papillault@uic.org

UIC Human Factors Group has launched its first Focus: http://www.uic.org/IMG/pdf/focus_humanfactors_fev2013.pdf

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Human Factors Focus

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