‘NASS to okay AIB bill for rail, road accident investigation’
The National Assembly has penciled the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB’s) draft bill for passage, and expanding statutory duties at the Bureau.
Specifically, the bill aims to empower accident investigators to probe non-air related major incidents and accidents in the transport sector.In preparation for this new assignment, the AIB has trained 30 investigators in multimodal transports – road, rail and water – to bring Nigeria at par with global best practices.
Chief Executive Officer of the AIB, Akin Olateru, who disclosed this, said the Bureau is ready for all modes of transportation, once the Senate passes the bill into law. Olateru told reporters in Lagos recently that there would be challenges, but the Bureau will deploy the right processes and procedures to get to the root-cause of accidents in rail, road, air and maritime.
He reemphasised that the aim of accident investigation is not punitive but to draw safety recommendations that prevent future reoccurrence of accidents. Olateru said: “Going multimodal means we can investigate not just air accident but rail, marine, road and so on. We are joining nations round the world who operate this multimodal system.
“Last year, the Federal Executive Council (FEC), approved our proposal and the new draft bill for the AIB. Before the senate went on recess the Bill is right on their table. Before the year runs out hopefully, the AIB will be investigating other transport means.
“When you look at accident investigation whether maritime, rail or road, the end goal is the same, to provide safety recommendations that would make the system better. In the last one year we have sent 30 investigators to train on multi-modal accident investigations and another two are going in September.
“We are closely working with the United States NTSB and the Singaporean NTSB and these trainings include extensive On-the-Job Training (OJT), to support them with relevant experience they can tap into and share from.”
The CEO said further that the bureau shall also be working with other investigators at the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC), Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), and Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), to foster cooperation.
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