Safety RDT: Human Factors Coordinating Committee

Safety RDT: Human Factors Coordinating Committee

An example of the Department's safety RD&T is the work of the HFCC. Established by the Secretary in 1991, the HFCC identifies and coordinates crossmodal RD&T and ensures the appropriate application of the science of human factors to the design, development, implementation, and evaluation of transportation systems. A model for crossmodal planning—particularly for DOT's RD&T Planning Council and RD&T Planning Team—the HFCC provides a forum for collaboration among program managers from all operating administrations. It also coordinates with members from the Department of Defense (DOD), Transportation Security Administration (TSA), U.S. Coast Guard, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, National Transportation Safety Board, and other agencies. The HFCC chair is a two-year position that rotates among the member administrations.

In addition to providing a venue for information sharing, the HFCC looks for opportunities to leverage resources across modes to address common issues. A recent example is the HFCC's Operator Fatigue Management Program. Launched in 2000, this program has delivered three major products and is scheduled to deliver two more in 2005. These products are fatigue management tools that are crossmodal in their application and available to the end users. The suite of tools includes (1) a software application to aid managers and schedulers in evaluating and designing work schedules; (2) guidance for validating fatigue models for different uses; (3) a handbook of scientifically-based fatigue management practices and countermeasures; (4) a logic model framework for prioritizing fatigue research; and (5) a blueprint for deriving a business case for the implementation of fatigue management activities.