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Open AccessArticle

The Safety Journey: Using a Safety Maturity Model for Safety Planning and Assurance in the UK Coal Mining Industry

Camborne School of Mines, University of Exeter, Cornwall Campus, Penryn, Cornwall TR10 9EZ, UK
UK Coal Plc, Harworth Park, Blyth Road, Harworth, Doncaster, South Yorkshire DN11 8DB, UK
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Minerals 2013, 3(1), 59-72;
Received: 30 November 2012 / Revised: 30 January 2013 / Accepted: 1 February 2013 / Published: 18 February 2013
A Safety Maturity Model was developed for use in UK coal mining operations in order to assess the level of compliance and effectiveness with a recently introduced standards based safety management system. The developed model allowed for a “self-assessment” of the maturity to be undertaken by teams from the individual sites. Assessments were undertaken at all sites (surface and underground) and in some cases within each site (e.g., underground operations, surface coal preparation plant). Once the level of maturity was established, improvement plans were developed to improve the maturity of individual standards that were weaker than the average and/or improve the maturity as a whole. The model was likened to a journey as there was a strong focus on continual improvement and effectiveness of the standards, rather than pure compliance. The model has been found to be a practical and useful tool by sites as a means of identifying strengths and weaknesses within their systems, and as a means of assurance with the safety management system standards. View Full-Text
Keywords: safety culture; safety management systems; safety maturity safety culture; safety management systems; safety maturity
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Foster, P.; Hoult, S. The Safety Journey: Using a Safety Maturity Model for Safety Planning and Assurance in the UK Coal Mining Industry. Minerals 2013, 3, 59-72.

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