ProRail's Commitment to Railway Safety with Synergi Life

How ProRail utilizes Synergi Life to enhance railway safety

ProRail is entrusted with the operation, maintenance, and expansion of the national railway infrastructure in the Netherlands and has turned to Synergi Life as their dependable system for risk and incident reporting. ProRail has leveraged Synergi Life to better manage their responsibilities, improve safety, and streamline decision-making processes. 

Synergi Life's Versatile Application 

Initially, ProRail employed Synergi Life primarily for incident and inspection management. The system became an important asset, allowing ProRail to comprehensively register data on incidents, audits, and inspections nationwide. Synergi Life soon enabled ProRail to gain enhanced control over investigation results and the outcomes of their safety improvement initiatives. 

Bart Hoogcarspel, Policy Advisor and Data Analyst at ProRail, saw the potential for Synergi Life to go beyond incident management. He recognized the significance of bowtie modeling within the rail industry and initiated discussions with industry colleagues. The team had previously started mapping different risks using spreadsheets, but as the amount of data grew, it quickly became challenging to share and manage the information. "The railway network is characterized by many different types of accidents. It's mandatory that we can explain our safety measures to the outside world," says Bart Hoogcarspel. 

ProRail - case - Synergi Life 1

Evolving with Synergi Life

ProRail's next step was to document all top events in conjunction with the ALARP (as low as reasonably practicable) evaluations. While this approach showed promise at first, it came with its limitations; Communicating with management about which threats required further evaluation proved challenging. Bowtie diagrams emerged as a suitable solution to illustrate the complex safety landscape previously hidden in spreadsheets. 

Synergi Life transformed these insights that were previously buried in data, into a tool that vividly illustrated ProRail's top safety risks and the systems in place to mitigate them. In addition to visualization, the bowtie diagrams also facilitated management's decision-making process, aiding in prioritizing safety initiatives and budgets effectively. "A key driver for adopting bowtie diagrams in Synergi Life was that they are easy to understand by everyone in the organization, not just the experts that created the Excel spreadsheets," says Bart Hoogcarspel. 

What is on the Horizon 

ProRail is now working on a direct connection between incidents and their associated bowtie diagrams in Synergi Life. This approach allows them to track historical incidents that have led to accidents or top events and those with low likelihoods. This data-driven approach further enhances the efficiency of their Barrier Management program, helping them identify critical barriers and over time, eliminate unnecessary ones. 

ProRail is pleased to have a dynamic barrier management method aligned with the requirements of the Assessment of Safety Level and Safety Performance set by the European Union Agency for Railways. You can learn more on how to ensure dynamic barrier handling in complex rail environments here.

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About ProRail 

ProRail is a government-owned organization entrusted with the management and maintenance of the Dutch railway infrastructure. Their mission is to ensure the safe and efficient operation of the Dutch rail network, facilitating the transportation of passengers and goods across the country, while also keeping crossing users, railway staff, contractors and unauthorized people safe. ProRail's commitment to railway safety remains unwavering, with Synergi Life playing a pivotal role in their endeavors. 


Customer name: ProRail 


Market: Netherlands/Europe 

Employees: 4,900 

Product: Synergi Life – Audit Management, Barrier Management, Incident Management, Inspection Management and Syenrgi Life Connect mobile app 

Brief account 

Why we initially chose Synergi Life: 

  • Incident Follow-up: Synergi Life ensures that all incidents are properly addressed before closure, guaranteeing the integrity of incident reporting. 
  • Monthly Reporting: The monthly reports generated from Synergi Life data serve as the foundation for the work of all safety advisors, streamlining their efforts. 

This is what we gained: 

  • Holistic Data Utilization: Synergi Life serves as a versatile tool for both input and output of safety data, promoting a comprehensive approach. 
  • Enhanced Visualization: Bowtie diagrams have revolutionized their barrier management system by facilitating effective communication and supporting top management's decision-making processes. 
ProRail uses Synergi Life Risk Management and QHSE software

Synergi Life has helped us to take some of the insights that were buried in spreadsheets and turn them into a tool that illustrates our top risks and the systems that are in place to help stop them.

  • Bart Hoogcarspel ,
  • Policy Advisor and Data Analyst ,
  • ProRail
ProRail uses Synergi Life Risk Management and QHSE software

If you don't know the details and if you can't measure what's happening, how can you do anything about it? With Synergi Life we can keep track of the incidents and find the right measures to improve the situation.

  • Linda Wright ,
  • Safety Advisor/Analyst ,
  • ProRail

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