A hybrid simulation approach for integrating safety behavior into construction planning: An earthmoving case study
Review articleOpen access

AbstractOne of the key challenges in improving construction safety and health is the management of safety behavior. From a system point of view, workers work unsafely due to system level issues such as poor safety culture, excessive production pressure, inadequate allocation of resources and time and lack of training. These systemic issues should be eradicated or minimized during planning. However, there is a lack of detailed planning tools to help managers assess the impact of their upstream decisions on worker safety behavior. Even though simulation had been used in construction planning, the review conducted in this study showed that construction safety management research had not been exploiting the potential of simulation techniques. Thus, a hybrid simulation framework is proposed to facilitate integration of safety management considerations into construction activity simulation. The hybrid framework consists of discrete event simulation (DES) as the core, but heterogeneous, interactive and intelligent (able to make decisions) agents replace traditional entities and resources. In addition, some of the cognitive processes and physiological aspects of agents are captured using system dynamics (SD) approach. The combination of DES, agent-based simulation (ABS) and SD allows a more “natural” representation of the complex dynamics in construction activities. The proposed hybrid framework was demonstrated using a hypothetical case study. In addition, due to the lack of application of factorial experiment approach in safety management simulation, the case study demonstrated sensitivity analysis and factorial experiment to guide future research.

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