NTSB to Hold Forum on Safety Culture

Friday, July 26, 2013
By George Hatcher

The National Transportation Safety Board today announced that it will hold a forum addressing the importance of safety culture in transportation on September 10 and 11, 2013, in Washington, D.C.

“In our accident investigations we’ve seen instances of weak or non-existent safety cultures,” said Chairman Deborah A.P. Hersman. “In this forum, we want to highlight what’s present in strong safety cultures as well as identify what works to build these cultures in order to more effectively prevent accidents.”

The forum will review the progress and innovations that have been made in developing safety cultures throughout the transportation community and pinpoint areas where there are opportunities for improvements. Participants — including operators, labor groups and oversight authorities — will outline their roles, responsibilities and methods for developing effective safety cultures, with emphasis on the remaining challenges and steps needed for further improvements.

The two-day forum, “Safety Culture: Enhancing Transportation Safety,” will be chaired by Hersman; all five Board Members will participate. Panelists include researchers, regulators, and leaders in both transportation and non-transportation industries.

The forum will address ways of enhancing safety by providing first-hand accounts of efforts from both transportation and non-transportation industries to develop effective safety cultures and to implement specific safety-enhancement techniques. Highlighting progress while recognizing remaining challenges, the invited panelists will discuss advances in safety culture research, and describe the roles, responsibilities, and methods for developing effective safety cultures within their industries.

The forum panels will include:

Research Perspectives on Organizational Accidents
Techniques to Enhance Organizational Safety
Non-Transportation Perspectives on Safety Culture
Organizational Leadership Perspectives on Safety Culture
Safety Culture Management and Oversight in Transportation
Companies and their Safety Culture Experiences.
There will also be a review of some recent organizational accidents that have been investigated by the NTSB. Invited panelists will include researchers, regulators, and industry leaders.

The forum will be held in the NTSB Board Room and Conference Center, located at 429 L’Enfant Plaza E., S.W., Washington, DC. The public can view the forum in person or by live webcast. Webcast archives are generally available by the end of the next day following the forum, and webcasts are archived for a period of 3 months from after the date of the event.

Organizations and/or individuals can submit input for consideration as part of the forum’s archived materials. Submissions should directly address one or more of the forum’s topic areas (identified by the panel titles) and should be submitted electronically as an attached document to: SafetyCultureForum@ntsb.gov. Input received will be entered into the public docket for this forum.

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