Case Study #1
Plan Do Check Act
Sense TMR Ltd were introduced to a large haulage operator by a trade association. The company had been called to Public Inquiry by the Traffic Commissioner to consider certain identified failings within the maintenance systems. The Licence was curtailed along with certain other sanctions and undertakings given.
John Brooks of Sense TMR Ltd was initially invited to develop a plan to resolve the immediate issues identified in an independent audit undertaken by the operator and to draft a letter of response to the Traffic Commissioner. He then worked with the company over the next 3 months to implement the systems to resolve the maintenance failings, to meet the undertakings given, and to prepare for a second independent audit to verify the improvements and ensure they were sustainable. A Plan, Do, Check, Act (PDCA) routine was developed and installed. Once the team were confident that the required sustainable improvements had been made the second audit was called. John Brooks assisted with preparing for the second audit and attended on the day.
The sanctions have now been removed and the company is no longer required to provide compliance reports. It is not over though, Sense TMR Ltd still works alongside the operator on compliance and other projects even though the company are self-sufficient in terms of compliance and managing the PDCA cycle.
Case Study #2
An articulated vehicle was involved in a major incident outside of a large quarry that had the potential for numerous fatalities. No one was harmed in the event, but the quarry was closed for a number of hours as a result.
The haulage operator was subcontracted to collect materials from the quarry operator by a third party. The quarry operator is an international corporation with very high health and safety standards and initiated a major investigation. The haulage operator was asked to provide their own detailed report into the incident and provide details of their findings in terms of immediate, underlying and root causes. They were then invited along with the other parties involved to a meeting at the headquarters of the quarry operator to present the findings and to suggest and agree remedial actions with the quarry operator’s Managing Director, Health and Safety Director and Management Team. Naturally, the haulage operator was keen to ensure that this incident could not happen again and also believed that their future business interests were at risk - they needed support.
The haulier’s investigation was led by Sense TMR Ltd using reports, video and eyewitness evidence. This even involved John Brooks, the investigator, replicating the day’s events by driving a lorry to the quarry as a driver, loading and repeating the sequence of events leading up the incident. As a result of this investigation and root cause analysis a number of recommendations were made including some areas for improvement for the quarry operator!
Sense TMR Ltd not only attended the meeting but made the presentation of findings on behalf of all three parties. His recommendations were adopted and implemented. The haulier, third party and quarry operator remain business partners to this day. More importantly, there has been no repeat of the incident since.
Root cause: an initiating event or failing from which all other causes or failings spring. Root causes are generally management, planning or organisational failings. Courtesy of HSE HSG245
Case Study #3
A very large haulage operator running flatbed vehicles had one of their vehicles stopped by the Police and issued with a prohibition notice for insufficient load security. This was not the first stop. In fact, there had been a few, this was now going to affect the Operator Compliance Risk Score (OCRS). The company had become rather frustrated because only a few months earlier one of their vehicles, secured in exactly the same way, had been stopped by another enforcement body and the driver commended on the load security.
What was needed was a system of security that would ensure safe load security, that would not be excessive to the requirements and therefore costly and time consuming and that, frankly, would satisfy all enforcement bodies. John Brooks pulled together a team compromising of a trade association engineer and representatives of the Police and the DVSA. Trials were arranged at one of the company's Operating Centres and physical testing was conducted.
The resulting solution was agreed by all parties and circulated to all enforcement teams. There has been no further enforcement action against the operator. Since then, John Brooks of Sense TMR Ltd has assisted in this matter on the production of an official training resource and contributed to one wide circulation industry Drivers’ Handbook.