Effective accident response in humanitarian mine action (HMA) contributes to increased safety in future demining work. Mine action organizations play a variety of roles in the improvement of accident response, with the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement in the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs being the most recent to adjust their accident response process by establishing the Accident Review Panel (ARP). This panel consolidates the office’s efforts and allows for standardized accident response protocol and the collection and analysis of accident data. Other organizations active in cultivating better accident responses include the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS), The HALO Trust (HALO), Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD), private accident specialists such as Andy Smith and his Database of Demining Accidents (DDAS), and other mine action actors. Accident response continues to improve as organizations focus on best practices such as accident preparedness, conducting quality investigations and reports, and promoting a culture of openness when sharing lessons learned. Through continuous dedication to best practices in accident response, the HMA community may see improved safety in future projects and demining endeavors.



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