Marc McBride
Data and information sharing for safety and environmental benefit webinar chair
Principal Inspector – Nuclear Safety at ONR

We’re delighted to have you chair our webinar this week, what are you looking forward to most?

I think we will hear from our speakers that there is both the incentive and the opportunity to do more to share data and information for safety and environmental benefit.  I’m looking forward to hearing practical examples of how this can be done, including the role of new or revised standards.

We know ONR are a member of Hazards Forum and we’d like to know more about your professional life. Please can you give a little background into your current role?

I am an inspector in nuclear safety, specialising in human and organisational factors.  I trained as a chemical engineer and have worked in a variety of sectors, including oil and gas, both in the UK and overseas, working for consultancy companies as well as operators.  Our specialism in ONR addresses the ‘people’ aspects of safety, working alongside engineering colleagues to understand and address underlying organisational and cultural factors.

During your career, in what capacity has data and information sharing impacted your work?

I previously worked as a safety engineer responsible for several ageing offshore and onshore gas assets in the UK.  Shortfalls in data and information on the design of these assets caused us to take a cautious approach in making modifications and upgrading plant and equipment.  It made me realise that engineers have an important duty to maintain accurate, accessible records of their work, covering not just the ‘what’ (drawings, data sheets etc) but the ‘why’ as well (basis of design, safety case etc).

Data and information sharing came into tragic focus in the Grenfell fire, resulting in a review by Dame Judith Hackitt that recommended using a ‘golden thread’ of information that focussed on the safety of high-rise residential buildings. Do you think the ‘golden thread’ idea should be rolled out in other industries? 

I agree.  I think the basic requirement to protect and share data and information is there in most sectors, if not explicitly in regulations, then implicitly in standards and guidance.  However in the wake of the Grenfell tragedy, the high risk building sector has gone to a new level in establishing the ‘golden thread’ requirements and putting in place the practical means to achieve this.  Other sectors can learn from this.

At the end of our webinar you will be facilitating a Q&A with the presenters, what will be your burning question for them?

My burning question is how the building sector has come together to overcome the challenge of sharing data and information for safety and environmental benefit, across the asset lifecycle and through the supply chain.

What do you think the takeaway will be for those attending this event?

I hope attendees will find the event informative and challenging.  I hope we can all take away ideas and insights which will help us manage data and information much better in our own sectors and roles, so that we don’t create a hazardous legacy for the next generation to deal with.

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