Cover Image

Not for Sale



View/Hide Left Panel
Click for next page ( 117


The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement



Below are the first 10 and last 10 pages of uncorrected machine-read text (when available) of this chapter, followed by the top 30 algorithmically extracted key phrases from the chapter as a whole.
Intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text on the opening pages of each chapter. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.

Do not use for reproduction, copying, pasting, or reading; exclusively for search engines.

OCR for page 116
116 APPENDIX E Synopses of Peer Reviews The purpose of the peer reviews was to get feedback from uct status. So in effect, the one selection was substituted for industry and government Subject Matter Experts on the the other.) research approach and findings. Seven peer reviewers were identified and agreed to participate on a voluntary basis. They Peer Reviewer Responses were provided the following by e-mail: Reviewer: Official of Class I Railroad Summary guidance on the purpose of the review 1. Were the objectives and instructions provided to peer The link to the TRB project description of HMCRP Project reviewers adequate? 04 (http://144.171.11.40/cmsfeed/TRBNetProjectDisplay. Yes asp?ProjectID=2660) 2. Was the project objective clearly explained? A 15-page "executive summary" version of the HMCRP Yes Project 04 technology selection process and results 3. Was the characterization of the research approach easy to including tables and figures, such as the overall step-wise understand? process and a table with the most promising technology Yes selections 4. Does the research approach appear comprehensive and A table duplicating the preliminary most promising tech- fair? nology selections with amplifying information and a gen- Yes. Well thought out in advance of the research. eral characterization of the selections 5. Are the conclusions reached (i.e., the selection of the ten Mention of the common security credential, one of the most promising technologies) properly supported? original preliminary most promising technologies, a link to Yes the TRB HMCRP Project 08 solicitation, and an explana- 6. Is there one or more technology you would have expected tion that the HMCRP Project 04 team recognizes the com- to see in the most promising technology selections but did mon security credential technology investigation will be not? If so, what is the technology and its significance? addressed by HMCRP Project 08 Two spreadsheets, each with four sheets, provided to give Coverage exceeded expectations (and was actually quite insight into how extensively the research was conducted but informative already). that did not require the reviewer to get into very detailed 7. To what target audience(s) do you think these results will information have great interest? Why? Technology holders/entrepreneurs--to an extent this Four of the seven invitees responded. Table E-1 characterizes project is highlighting potential markets for existing and those four and is followed by their written responses, which are adaptable products shown in bold type. After considering the reasoning in one of Industry--technology advances are a viable frontier the responses, the team elevated technologies related to con- for enhancements in safety and security, and with cost tainer integrity to most promising technology status. (Simulta- efficiencies neously and independent of peer review activity, another of 8. Other thoughts and observations on the process and results. the original most promising technology selections--fast power Item 3 Assumptions, second bullet point, has the curious charge/storage--was considered to have already reached prod- inclusion of "--including corrosives" that doesn't seem to

OCR for page 116
117 Table E-1. Peer review responders. more directed at "blue water" shipping than "brown water," where I'm from. I don't believe we have as many, Organization Number Responding Class I Railroad 1 and certainly not as significant, "requirement gaps" as Marine Shipper 1 shown in this study. Chemical Manufacturer/Shipper 1 Regulatory Agency 1 My biggest concern about the project is that little, if any, energy went into addressing the third objective, "to identify potential impediments to . . . their development, deploy- ment, and maintenance (e.g., technical, economic, legal, have relevance by singling out this hazard class. As it and institutional)." The functional requirements appear doesn't add significance (at least to me), future inclusion much as a wish list and development of technologies will of this cite should better explain the reasoning. tend to be driven by the perceived cost vs. benefit analysis. Development of Table 3 could use an expanded explana- Quite frankly, some of them would not appear (to me) tion. I didn't follow the analysis of communications and to make the grade, but that is off the top without proper the rail mode (which seems to be a need area on Table 3, analysis. but a low priority on Table 1b). It may just be my feeble brain waves. Chemical Manufacturer/Shipper Official Overall, an excellent interim report and with an approach 1. Were the objectives and instructions provided to peer much different (and more appealing) than I'd expected. reviewers adequate? Yes Reviewer: Marine Shipper Official 2. Was the project objective clearly explained? Yes 1. Were the objectives and instructions provided to peer 3. Was the characterization of the research approach easy to reviewers adequate? understand? The objectives are clear and instructions adequate. Yes 2. Was the project objective clearly explained? 4. Does the research approach appear comprehensive and fair? The project objective is clearly explained. NOT SURE. Quite honestly, I was surprised by the results 3. Was the characterization of the research approach easy to in that "detection and response" related technologies understand? seemed to be rated much higher in priority than technolo- Once I had time to focus on this, I could understand the gies focused on "deterrence and prevention." Much of research approach. the collaborative work that industry and government are 4. Does the research approach appear comprehensive and fair? engaged on today in the rail transportation sector is focused At first, my thought was the approach was comprehensive on "prevention"--i.e., improving the integrity of the rail and fair, but after reviewing the details of the interviewees, tank car against various safety and security threats. This I have concerns that individual bias and unique experi- work is being folded into the Advanced Tank Car Collab- ences have given undue weight to unrepresentative needs. orative Research Program--which is likely to fund research 5. Are the conclusions reached (i.e., the selection of the ten in this area in the range of $15 million over the next 5 years. most promising technologies) properly supported? It is not clear how that can be reconciled with the conclu- My response to question 4 notwithstanding, for the most sions in your report. part conclusions have proper support. 6. Is there one or more technology you would have expected Part of the issue may be that under your rating scheme, to see in the most promising technology selections but did tank car survivability is rated fairly low because there is not? If so, what is the technology and its significance? only one "high priority" check in the box. That fails to rec- Technology is not my general interest for study. I have ognize that that one check represents the single greatest nothing more or new to offer. safety and security risk the chemical industry faces in the 7. To what target audience(s) do you think these results will transportation sector--e.g., although the frequency of TIH have great interest? Why? incidents by rail is very low, the potential consequences Government regulatory agencies and some product devel- could be extremely high. In that context, your ranking opers and vendors. scheme may "undervalue" the need for additional research 8. Other thoughts and observations on the process and results. to address low probability/high consequence events. First, let me state my experience and expertise comes from 5. Are the conclusions reached (i.e., the selection of the ten 36 years in the Inland Barge Transportation Industry. most promising technologies) properly supported? The observations and conclusions related to Marine seem See response to question 4.

OCR for page 116
118 6. Is there one or more technology you would have expected No. The method of application of each functional require- to see in the most promising technology selections but did ment was not explained and the tables directly following not? If so, what is the technology and its significance? the functional requirement definitions were not explained See response to question 4. and were confusing. For example, the "Package Integrity" requirement does not specify which type of packaging will Specific technologies that are being evaluated to improve be the comparison standard. For the Roadway trans- tank car survivability are listed in the supporting spread- portation mode, does the package refer to tank trailers, sheet (lines 128-144). If those types of technologies were drums, cylinders, etc.? It seems as if the research team was out-of-scope for the purpose of this study, I do not believe trying to capture all types of packaging, but no specifics that was clearly stated in the project scope and objectives. were given. By failing to include those technologies, or at least acknowl- 4. Does the research approach appear comprehensive and fair? edge that they were not included for a stated reason, I Without a better explanation of the project, I cannot believe the report could be misleading (and ultimately make that determination at this time. criticized). 5. Are the conclusions reached (i.e., the selection of the ten 7. To what target audience(s) do you think these results will most promising technologies) properly supported? have great interest? Why? I cannot make that determination at this time. Government and private sector parties involved in Hazmat 6. Is there one or more technology you would have expected transportation and vendors of listed technology solutions. to see in the most promising technology selections but did 8. Other thoughts and observations on the process and results. not? If so, what is the technology and its significance? I was confused by tables 1a through 1e, because it appears No the axes are labeled improperly. The tables show ratings 7. To what target audience(s) do you think these results will going from "high" in the lower left corner to "low" at the top have great interest? Why? and right. I believe that is exactly the opposite of the way These results would have greatest interest to those seek- ratings are normally presented--and it appears to con- ing to manufacture devices to satisfy these needs or for tradict the language in the boxes of those tables, which those who are in the process of writing research propos- indicate that as you move up and to the right the ranking als. As a Hazmat employee who deals mostly with pres- increases from "low" to "high"--not from "high" to "low." sure vessels and other types of packaging, my knowledge Thank you for the opportunity to review this draft report. of emerging technologies outside of this field is limited. 8. Other thoughts and observations on the process and results. Regulatory Agency Representative Overall, the project summary was not written with the audience in mind. The project summary and its sup- 1. Were the objectives and instructions provided to peer porting documentation are quite voluminous, but at the reviewers adequate? same time, a great deal of basic information is missing. The purpose of having the peer review was not clear. In my opinion, the peer reviewers likely have diverse Before receiving this evaluation format I had no clear backgrounds and experience, so to expect that they will idea about what type of feedback would be valuable to the all have an adequate understanding of all of the tech- TRB. The instructions provided at the initial submission nology sectors and its implications on transportation is of the 15-page project summary and the accompanying not realistic. Furthermore, my answers to the questions spreadsheets were not adequate. Also, being a first-time on this peer review document reflect the preparedness of TRB peer reviewer, I did not have an adequate introduc- this document for an unindoctrinated audience and its tion to the organization or the project. effectiveness in communicating what was done in this 2. Was the project objective clearly explained? research. Though I am sure those who have been closest The project objectives, as stated in Section 1 (titled Proj- to this research and the preparation of the peer review ect Purpose), were clearly stated, but the other documen- documents have a thorough understanding of the tation was very difficult to comprehend. research, its methodology and the conclusions, the job of 3. Was the characterization of the research approach easy to bringing it out of the heavens for external consumption understand? was not well executed.