China Safety Science Journal ›› 2022, Vol. 32 ›› Issue (8): 126-132.doi: 10.16265/j.cnki.issn1003-3033.2022.08.1069

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Safety analysis for remote control system of inland ships

ZHANG Puzhe1,2,3(), WU Bing1,3, YAN Xinping1,2,3, YIP Tszleung4   

  1. 1 Intelligent Transportation System Research Center, Wuhan University of Technology, Wuhan Hubei 430063, China
    2 School of Transportation and Logistics Engineering, Wuhan University of Technology, Wuhan Hubei 430063, China
    3 National Engineering Research Center for Water Transport Safety, Wuhan University of Technology, Wuhan Hubei 430063, China
    4 TUNG C Y International Centre for Maritime Studies, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong 999077, China
  • Received:2022-02-16 Revised:2022-05-11 Online:2022-09-05 Published:2023-02-28


In order to improve navigation safety of inland remotely-controlled ships, a remote control structure was proposed for inland ships at different levels of autonomy (remote control and remote supervise) and manning on board, and safety analysis was carried out by using STPA approach. From such analysis, 13 types of system-level hazards were identified, 47 UCA were recognized, and 49 safety strategies were designed to mitigate UCA. Then, they were applied to prototype development for remote control system of 7 m model ship in Tangxun lake. The results indicate that when autonomy level of remotely-controlled ships is improved, number of effective safety strategies will increase, and system safety will be enhanced. And when there are crews on board, number of most effective safety strategies will increase significantly, and safety of system will increase, but risks caused by human errors will also grow.

Key words: remotely-controlled ship, system-theoretic process analysis (STPA), safety control structure, safety strategy, unsafe control actions(UCA)