Safety & Compliance

Risk assessment for Prorail



Client ProRail is responsible for the railway network in the Netherlands and because they attach great importance to safety, they wanted an up-to-date risk assessment for the occupied buildings. This project was carried out by KH Engineering for the Kijfhoek rail yard, near Dordrecht. Rail yard Kijfhoek is the largest and most complex rail yard in the Netherlands. Trains are assembled to transport goods from the port to the hinterland as safely and efficiently as possible. Tank railcars with dangerous goods are also used regularly in this area.


KH Engineering provided an extensive risk assessment for ProRail. The basis for this assessment are the best practices from the Risk Assessment Manual of the Dutch trade association for the chemical industry VNCI. We started with the identification of the applicable regulations.. Hereafter, the research was conducted using two methods: a risk method and an effect method. Part of the risk method is an inventory of locations on which incidents could theoretically take place. On a rail yard, this could be a derailed train, a collision, a leak or an explosion. This concerns approximately 31,000 locations on Kijfhoek. After the risks have been identified, they are classified by effect type: fire, toxic cloud or explosion. 

A probability calculation was then made for each possible incident and it was determined how far the effects can reach. Special attention was paid to occupied buildings within this hazardous zone and how many people can be present there. All data was collected in a clear overview, so that the customer can see which measures must be taken for risk mitigation.

In response to the project technical and organisational safety recommendations where made. Technical recommendations, for example provide the windows in a building that may be damaged by a pressure wave with foil, which prevents shards from entering the building.


Organisational by paying extra attention to incident training and the alarm protocol, with which you can evacuate people to an existing safe and gas-tight space when a toxic cloud is present. And under the theme “prevention is better than cure”, the necessity of the presence of people in a hazardous zone has been carefully examined.

Benefit for the customer

Through the efforts of the HSSE Engineering department, KH Engineering was able to quickly and flexibly answer the customer’s question. With the report for risk assessment, ProRail can further increase the safety level of the workplace. The company can use this to demonstrate to the authorities that it is making every effort to recognise hazards and to offer its people a safe workplace. Thanks to the collaboration with KH Engineering, ProRail is aware of the industrial risks and the laws and regulations.

Activities KH Engineering
KH Engineering performed the following activities for this project:

  • Inventory regulations
  • Risk inventory
  • Effect calculation
  • Draw up scenarios based on possible incidents and effects
  • Consequence modelling
  • Determine damage effects
  • Advising measures
  • Deliver reporting

Project leader: Twan van den Broek

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