Lloyds Register Foundation is working with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) to bring together safety data on an unprecedented scale, powered by the latest digital technology. Discovering Safety will make the working world safer and help prevent death and serious injuries by giving unprecedented access to lessons learnt from the past – everything from small incidents to industrial catastrophes.
Discovering Safety takes the collection, interrogation and learning from safety data to new heights. We’re harnessing state-of-the-art AI technology and working with innovative digital start-ups to bring to extract new insights and make connections in new ways.
Learning from incidents in the past is an established way of preventing harm from happening in future. And the more incident data available, the greater the chance of more insight, putting in place the correct policies and processes and stopping people being hurt in the workplace.
Andrew Curran, HSE’s Chief Scientific Advisor, said: “Our collaboration with Lloyd’s Register Foundation on Discovering Safety will have a huge impact on our ability to learn from incidents and accidents. It’s our next step towards a world where no one dies as a consequence of work, where industry doesn’t suffer catastrophic failure, where companies can say that no one was harmed in the making of their product and where accidents can be predicted and therefore prevented.”
Discovering Safety has an ambitious remit, working on cross-cutting solutions for everything from construction to high hazard industry. Its Knowledge Risk Library brings together safety information initially from the construction sector, consolidating information from past incidents will help the construction industry learn from past failures, and design and implement measures that will help prevent tragedies such as the Grenfell fire happening again.
Solutions are also being sought from data for industrial challenges such as ‘loss of containment ‘– which led to the catastrophic 2005 fire at the UK’s Buncefield oil depot (causing £1bn of damage) and the disastrous 1984 chemical spill in Bhopal, India, costing thousands of lives.
At the heart of Discovering Safety is the objective of creating a knowledge library of safety data on a scale never seen before – combining 40+ years of data, gathered by HSE from investigating workplace accidents and incidents, with other sources of incident data from around the world.
It’s also using state of the art data anonymising and data mining approaches to link and extract intelligence from these data sets. This involves going further than ever before to uncover safety data – including using text mining tools to make a wealth of free text documents searchable.
Some of the major projects our grant has helped fund include:
- An auto-anonymisation project with Ohalo. This will remove one of the major obstacles to making data accessible – the laborious process of removing sensitive data including people’s personal details from safety information.
- The ‘Severity Scanner’ – a tool that harnesses the power of machine learning to make information on RIDDORs (Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations) easier to access. The Severity Scanner, developed with industry partner Mitchell and Butler, removes one of the big barriers to gathering, learning and benefiting from serious incident data – making RIDDORs much easier to identify and report. It uses machine learning techniques to flag which reports are reportable under RIDDOR – something that would normally be a manual task. The Severity Scanner will improve operational efficiency by helping organisations avoid the human cost –comply with legislation and learn from accidents to understand how they could have been prevented. It also provides an anonymised resource for organisations to gain learning and experience from RIDDOR reports from peer groups.
- Integrating its Knowledge Risk Library with the power of Building Information Management (BIM) – an industry tool that produces powerful, 3d visualisations of a building or piece of infrastructure by combining disparate data sources. This exciting development would allow safety practitioners and industry to understand how to design and build construction projects in a safer way and reduce and remove issues before they turn into incidents and cause harm.
For more information on the Discovering Safety programme please visit https://www.discoveringsafety.com/