HSE digital pilot aims to design out safety risks

A team involving the Health & Safety Executive (HSE), Atkins, software house 3D Repo and the University of Manchester have called on the industry to trial its Discovering Safety designer risk suggestion tool.

Speaking at the 3D Repo-sponsored webinar at the Digital Construction Summit, HSE inspector Gordon Crick highlighted the need to design out risk with a ‘digital rehearsal’: "Identify the risk and make the change in a predicted state so that you’re doing it before the costs and challenges of correcting it on site arise.

"We can enforce cooperation and coordination, but collaboration comes from the heart. We need to win over hearts and minds so people desire to collaborate. The level of collaboration required is significant and digital tools enable more sophisticated and evidenced collaboration in construction design."

Using 3D Repo’s SafetiBase, the Discovering Safety tool collates health and safety risks and automatically suggests the treatments available to either reduce or entirely eliminate those risks, standardised to PAS1192-6.

Immutable audit trail

The tool includes a time-stamping facility when changes are made to a design to reduce risks, creating an audit trail.

Zane Ulhaq, Atkins digital engineering manager who has been seconded to the Discovering Safety team, noted that the audit trail generated by the time-stamping encourages designers to deal with risks as they arise throughout the design process rather than dealing with them at the end of the process. "A designer could be challenged when it becomes apparent they didn’t document risks until the end," he said.

Dr William Collinge of Manchester University said: "We’re looking to engage with industry to use this tool more so it become more mature. Some of the questions we’re looking for answers to: does the tool fulfil the needs of designers? How well does it fit with your processes? What are the stand-out issues?

"This tool is all about engaging with industry standards like PAS 1192-6 and making it real and activating it in a BIM environment. This tool is for everybody to use, and is also an excellent open learning/training tool for designers.

"We’re looking to develop it into 4D, but we’re conscious not to run before we can walk."

In response to an attendee’s question about encouraging the adoption of new technology, 3D Repo customer success manager and BIM specialist Bogdan Davydov said: "The simple method is picking it up and using it. We had some customers struggling to sell [new technology to their supply chain] but as soon as they gave it a try, they realised it’s user-friendly. We can show you all the demos you like, but nobody understands the true value of it until they see it work for them with real-life examples."

Watch the webinar on demand:

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