Incidents with production, transport or storage of dangerous substances (i.e. toxic, flammable or explosive substances) may affect public safety, in particular in densely populated urban areas. Risks associated with such substances are the core business of the External Safety group within TNO. We support and advise national and international companies, national and regional regulators as well as emergency services on issues related to the hazards and risks of dangerous goods. We perform (quantitative) risk assessments (QRAs), safety studies of industrial installations, self rescue and evacuation studies as well as accident investigations.
Furthermore the group develops its own methods and tools to perform these studies and conducts research aimed at incorporating new developments into these methods. The latter includes using new calculation methods (like Finite Elements Methods, Computation Fluid Dynamics), adapting techniques for use with upcoming fuels (like LNG, CNG or Hydrogen), using sensor data and integrating the tools with other methods dealing with issues relevant in urbanised areas, like mobility/accessibility, air quality or noise.
As safety assurance should not only be approached in a technical way, the team at TNO that deals with the safety culture and management of organisations (Safe working) is part and parcel of the “safety team” of TNO.
TNO provides access to the latest developments in the field of knowledge relating to safety calculations. This knowledge can help companies and public authorities - in particular the Safety Regions – to extend and improve existing analysis methods and calculations, making it possible to take appropriate measures in the event of a disaster.