Progress Through Unity

C3RS Safety Forum

During the course of Summer 2015, beginning with Dover and Morrisville on July 20, the NJT C3RS Peer Review Team (PRT) will be visiting various terminals to discuss several issues that are important to all members. Since 2009, your PRT has received and analyzed over 500 reports submitted to the Confidential Close Call Reporting System (C3RS). The system the PRT has been trained on, and utilizes when investigating C3RS reports, is called Multiple Cause Incident Analysis (MCIA). The word “multiple” holds special significance to us as we always find that there are multiple factors that lead to ‘close calls”. The PRT has found that two factors present themselves in almost every case we analyze and are being given special attention during this special PRT Safety Forum.

The first factor we want to discuss is “Situational Awareness”. Many definitions are used when describing situational awareness. Some call it “paying attention, some call it “keeping your head in the game”, others may describe it as “staying on the ball”. Whatever term or phrase is used, one thing is clear; this factor is the number one component of the vast majority of C3RS reports.

The PRT has taken on the challenge to find out what causes the loss of situational awareness and how to prevent it. We’ve enlisted the help of NJT’s Office of System Safety and they have reached out to a potentially great resource, Liberty Mutual Insurance. They are leaders in “risk reduction” and “situational awareness” and we are excited to see what tools, programs and suggestions they have for us in our quest to combat this very real problem.

The second factor we want to bring special attention to is “Safety Job Briefings” (SJB). The lack of a SJB, or thorough SJB, has been found as another leading factor in most C3RS reports. The PRT has taken several steps to assist in this matter including recommending dedicated SJB rooms (the first 2 of which are currently being installed in Hoboken and NYP) and also developing the helpful SJB tri-fold that has been shown to be a helpful resource not only when conducting a SJB but through the course of the workday. The PRT now is adding an additional piece to the puzzle; a “Safety Job Briefing Checklist”. We feel that the use of this checklist when conducting a SJB will prove to be a tremendous help to both new trainees and seasoned veterans alike. Conducting a SJB in a consistent, clear and professional manner will help ALL of us to become better Train and Engine Service Professionals.

We are asking all Train Crews to use the Checklist samples that are being provided to you with an open mind and report back to us after this week via email at with any comments or suggestions you have regarding the design or use of this form.