Institute of Expert Witnesses

Providing specialist advice and support in accident cases

The Institute of Expert Witnesses offers professional impartial and independent advice and provides qualified expert opinions to support the legal process of resolving cases of accidents and injury.


In the first three issues of this series of blogs our Chairman William MackayIFMGA looks at the Safe System of Training/ Operating in the Adventure Tourism sector we looked at “Safe Culture”, “Safe Place” and “Safe Practice”. What we are trying to do is see how the evidence can be analyzed against an established safe system, which we have identified as The Safe System, a model that can be referred to when considering most accidents in this sector.

To recap: The Safe System of Training/ Operating is a safety management analysis protocol the consists of 5 separate elements where the hazards have been assessed and the consequent control measures have been integrated, at a high level, into formal procedures, in order to reduce the inherent risks to as low as is reasonably practicable (within the constraints imposed by the operational imperative). Today we continue and look at “Safe Equipment” in this overall concept.

When looking at this element we must consider further that The Safe System of Training/ operating can/ is used to evaluate the operation/ incident where the injury and/ or damage occurred and evaluate whether or not the operating culture/organization have a:

Safe Equipment. The HSE require Employers to ensure that their subordinates have, and make use of, the correct equipment to carry out an activity. They must ensure that equipment is used and maintained as laid down in the relevant safety management documentation/ instructional material or as specified by the manufacturer. They are to ensure that only competent persons are allowed to operate and service the equipment. Comprehensive training and maintenance records must be kept.

 IEW experts who specialise in accident investigation have used the 5 elements of the Safe System as a tool to identify what happened, how it happened and why it happened and Safe Equipment is paramount to the operation and another chink in the armour contributing to the overall safety, the people who matter in the process, the element that we are going to explore in the final blog of this series.

Read here the THE SAFE SYSTEM – Part I blog article.

Read here the THE SAFE SYSTEM – Part II blog article.

Read here the THE SAFE SYSTEM – Part III blog article.

Look out for subsequent blogs when we address the other elements of the Safe System.

For any questions regarding Safe Systems or if you need expert witness advice on a case in the Adventure Tourism industry, please do not hesitate to contact our Expert Witnesses on 0117 986 2194 or at

Back to News