A maintenance site designed for safety
Jean-Luc Clément and Sofie Van Der Zanden present us with an example of good coordination and integration of safety in the design of a project. The enterprise drew lessons from the meetings on the Delta site before launching the next project. The "Jacques Brel" site has been conceived using a comprehensive approach as regards the equipment, the building, the work organization, and human aspects. Four risks were evaluated in the risk analysis: electrocution, work post, collision with a vehicle, and falling from a height.
In 2007, the Société des transports intercommunaux de Bruxelles (STIB) inaugurated its new depot for busses and metros in Anderlecht. From the construction stage on, interest was shown in this depot for the well-being of the maintenance personnel. During the design phase, the difficulties and the complaints formulated by the personnel on the Delta site were taken into account. For example, maintenance bays at Delta are underground, which requires the personnel to work by artificial light day and night. The ventilation is also completely dependent on the ventilators and extraction systems. On the Jacques Brel site, natural light is an essential element. Each facade and each roof is equipped with windows to let in daylight. In addition, movable slats have been installed to enhance natural ventilation.
The experience of working on the Delta site also allowed other lessons to be drawn, like the need to be able to have sufficiently deep pits and to place the platforms at the same height as the metro. This arrangement enables each employee to work in comfort.
The designers of the new site set out to reduce as much as possible the passage of the employees over the tracks. Exterior inspections, therefore, are done on a specific bridge that overhangs the platforms. In addition, the maintenance personnel can pass from one track to another by using the tunnels that link the various work pits. Removable railings have also been installed along the platforms so an employee will not get his foot caught between the platform and the metro train: if one wishes to enter a train, one must first remove the protective barrier and close it again once one has entered.
Another safety measure taken in the design stage of the building: the physical separation of the washing site with respect to the other platforms. This isolation reduces significantly the risk of electrocution. Respirators and compressed air systems are also fed by a central channel network, which avoids having to have electrical cables on the platforms.
The site also has a command and control centre that permits one to follow all the movements on the tracks of the depot and on the maintenance platforms. A vast network of cameras allows the rapid spotting of any dangerous situations. The operator who works in the control room also knows which tracks are live and which are not. The technicians who work alone in a maintenance pit are obliged to hit a “dead man” button every ten minutes. Failing that, the control centre is alerted and the operator can order a member of the staff to check if everything is alright in the pit concerned.
Jean-Luc Clément and Sofie Van Der Zanden stated that « Before maintenance installations can be used in practice, it is important to have an integrated approach taking into account all the aspects in the design stage, including the equipment, the organization and the human aspects. It is the precondition of a safe and sound maintenance work”.Click here to hide the full text
|Resources and Attachments|
|Workshop 2 - JL Clement.pdf|