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|Document Type: ||Thesis or dissertation|
|Title: ||Hazards awareness for aircraft accident investigators|
|Authors: ||Boston, Nathalie|
|Supervisors: ||Braithwaite, Graham R.|
|Issue Date: ||2010|
|Abstract: ||Hazards on accident sites are such that investigators must balance personal safety
against the risks involved in collecting evidence intended to prevent future loss of life.
Better knowledge of hazards and their mitigation could reconcile these conflicting
objectives to a point at which risk might be no greater than in other workplaces.
Nevertheless, the magnitude and nature of the hazards at any accident site cannot be
determined in advance.
The perceptions of novice accident investigators of potential hazards are not greatly
different from the realities encountered by experienced investigators, although the
former tend to focus on general health and safety issues, while experienced investigators
are more aware of hazards arising from aircraft systems and materials. Experienced
investigators reported most of the hazards they encountered over six years as arising
within a narrow range of hazard categories - yet they must be prepared to carry out
thorough investigations while protecting themselves against all hazards, including those
encountered very infrequently.
Both generic and dynamic risk assessments are important in protecting investigators and
the integrity of evidence. The ongoing management of an investigation in the field
involves a continuous and iterative cycle: identification of hazards, determination of
exposure, assessment of risk, introduction of controls, review and assessment of
remaining risk, and identification and management of residual hazard. Lives and
evidence depend upon the quality of this process.
At present, great reliance is placed on personal protection equipment as a control on
hazards. Observation of participants in training programmes has identified instances of
poor selection and ineffective use of such equipment to the extent that it has provided
The thesis points to required further directions in the training of investigators - an
investment which will yield its dividend in the prevention of future accidents and loss of
|Appears in Collections:||PhD and Masters by research theses (School of Engineering)|
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