Monday, September 2, 2013

New Confidential Logistics Forum to Discuss Safety in Road Haulage and other Freight Branches

Chatham House Rule Will Enable Full and Frank Analyses of Dangers Inherent in the Industry
Shipping News Feature

UK – Ruth Waring FCILT, the founder of the Women in Logistics group and acting under the auspices of her own company, Labyrinth Logistics Consulting, has come up with a new idea to promote safety and prevent avoidable incidents in a slightly off beat way. Recognising the inherent dangers specifically within road haulage, and generally throughout the freight industry, whilst acknowledging the reluctance of many to discuss some matters openly, for fear of waking the dragon by revealing some thought or action they had thought better kept private, Ruth determined to create a confidential ‘Safety Circle’.

The group, which will initially consist of up to thirty companies, all manufacturers, retailers and logistics operators, as well as those designing and producing vehicles and equipment, will meet quarterly, with an additional on-line forum available only to members. The gathering will allow companies working in the logistics sector to be able to talk openly and discuss concerns about safety in their industry. The meetings will take place under the Chatham House Rule, meaning details of what is discussed cannot be traced back to any individual or company, effectively making it a confidential forum where learnings can still be used back at base.

Road haulage cargo and its associated handling and carriage problems are liable to figure high on the agenda of many meetings and therefore hot topics which will be discussed in the first year's gatherings include runaway vehicles, which can occur during the coupling and un-coupling process , and drive aways, in which a lorry drives off with an individual still in the back of the trailer being loaded. Ruth Waring explains the reasons for creating Safety Circle, saying:

"There has been a huge interest in discussing these topics within the logistics industry, and so we decided to create a Safety Circle for those companies who wanted a very specific forum to discuss the issues and learn from other professionals. As a closed group members will be able to share both ‘lessons learned’ and best practice, helping themselves and others to reduce injuries and lost time in the sector.

"There are a number of issues troubling the industry at the moment and until now there hasn't been an effective way of tackling them head on and having the important discussions in a confidential environment. This is really important in the aftermath of incidents where sharing knowledge on processes and equipment can help save lives elsewhere, but many companies are wary of doing so. There will be no hard sell, and no hangers-on."

Ruth Waring, who this year won the ‘Industry champion of the year' award at the prestigious FTA everywoman in Transport & Logistics Awards, is a transport consultant and director at Labyrinth and also sits on the Board of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport. Anyone who feels it would be of benefit to have a place in the Safety Circle forum can see details of how to join the discussions HERE.