Safety and Reliability Society has produced a series of new webinars that are available now for registration. Click the buttons below to register – live webinars are open to members and non-members.

  1. September 20th 1300 to 1400 – Professor George Bearfield of Huddersfield University will present – “Risk Acceptance in critical sectors: a Wicked problem”

The webinar will outline the problem of aligning expectations and requirements between government and private companies in safety critical sectors. The wicked problem is that risk acceptance criteria are fundamental but are viewed differently depending on who is considering them, and when in the lifecycle of a project or decision they are considering them.  The presenter would contrast experiences in the Rail, Aviation and Nuclear sectors.

It would describe key risk acceptance concepts and explain why it is a problem that these are only really understood in detail by practitioners given their huge significance to political decisions, major investment and the safety of and services provided to the public at large.

George Bearfield is Visiting Professor of Railway System Safety at the University of Huddersfield’s Institute of Rail Research, the UKRINN’s centre of excellence for Rolling Stock research. 

He is also Safety Director within Rock Rail, the rolling stock leasing and asset management company, with responsibility for all aspects of its Safety Management Systems including safety assurance responsibilities for the fleets under its management.

George is also an independent expert advisor to the board safety subcommittee of the UK air traffic control body National Air Traffic Services (NATS).

2. October 11th 1300 to 1400 – David Green of Engineering Safety Consultants Ltd will present “Functional Safety: Proof Testing – What’s it all about?”

Functional Safety is an ever increasing area of interest to safety regulators around the world. Once a system is in the operation and maintenance phase one of the key activities to maintaining the integrity of the safety system.

Many people misunderstand the purpose of proof testing and the importance of accurate scheduling and record keeping.

The webinar will cover:

  • Difference between test types
  • Effectiveness of tests and their impact on reliability / integrity
  • Importance and effect on inadequate scheduling controls

Importance of reviewing the results.

David is a certified TÜV Rheinland Functional Safety Expert in Safety Instrumented Systems.

David has spent most of his career working in upper tier COMAH manufacturing sites, maintaining the instrumentation systems on the organisation’s behalf including technical lead for Safety Lifecycle Management for five years at the UK’s second largest Refinery.

He now works in safety consultancy, specialising in, IEC61508/61511-compliance and reliability analysis for the Oil & Gas, Petrochemical, Manufacturing and other industries. A focus of his work is supporting clients with regulatory compliance in the area of Functional Safety.

3. November 20th 1300 to 1400 – Mike Castles of Ricardo Rail will present “Taking Safe Decisions—A Rail Perspective”

This webinar will review the legislative, ethical and business drivers that determine what is considered acceptably safe within the mainline railway industry in Great Britain. The discussion will include different perspectives on risk, defining risk acceptance criteria, legal obligations and regulation under the Office of Rail and Road (ORR), and suggest how we satisfy the requirements. Particular consideration will be given to the interaction between the SFAIRP/ALARP concept from UK law and the risk acceptance principles set out by the EU Regulation on a Common Safety Method on Risk Evaluation and Assessment (CSM RA), and to the issue of tolerability, all in the context of the guidance of the regulator and the industry guidance ‘Taking Safe Decisions’.

Mike is Ricardo Rail’s Global Technical Expert—Functional Safety. A career railway person, he has spent over 20 years in engineering safety, dealing with safety-critical signalling systems, infrastructure projects and rolling stock. As well as leading safety assurance activities, he has been lead independent assessor, most recently for Network Rail’s Digital Railway Programme. He is a presenter of Ricardo’s CSM RA training course. He was a member of the standards committees for the GB rail industry guidance on CSM RA, and is a member of the Working Group for the railway International Engineering Safety Management (iESM) guidance.

If you are a member of SaRS and you would like to view past webinars please register for access to the Member Area.

If you are not a member you can find out how to join here

If you would like to present a webinar as part of our developing programme please contact me via email at

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