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NTN & CTES hosted workshop on safety in Santiago

Oppdatert: 16. nov. 2023

With the presence of more than 80 attendees, October 17th, the Tunnel Construction Safety Workshop was successfully held at the InterContinental Chile hotel and available via Zoom, organized by the Chilean Corporation of Tunnels and Underground Spaces (CTES-Chile) and the Norwegian Tunneling Network (NTN).


Illustration: Arild Petter Sovik, Norwegian Tunnelling Network (Santiago, October 2023)


The participants was welcomed by the ambassador of Norway, Jostein Leiro. Norway can point to long experience and many exciting projects that include the construction of the world's largest subsea tunnel, but has also a high development rate in tunnel construction in general. We are very focused on safety, but we are also concerned about issues connected to sustainability and the environment. A good reason for Norway and Chile to start collaborative activities, and part of this is the High Potensial Opportunity prosjekt that started in 2021, and followed up with collaborative events like this in 2023.


“The first thing to mention is how important the collaboration with Norwegian Tunnelling Network (NTN) is, which results in this seminar, where we address an important aspect for all companies in the world, which is zero accidents”, highlighted Armando Olavarría, vice president of CTES-Chile. “We are currently addressing the issue of how in our tunnel industry in Chile can effectively achieve zero accidents, and this workshop has that objective, to visualize how we can replicate in our country the new practices the industry has in the world , in this case Norway, where the accident rate in tunnels is very low or non-existent, in order to avoid accidents in our great underground industry.”

Likewise, Gustavo Estay, president of CTES-Chile, highlighted the value of safety in the construction of underground works and its main current challenges in the welcome speech during the inaugural activity. “Safety at work is one of the fundamental values of the underground industry, which respects the dignity of people, which requires a particularly committed attitude, not only from leaders at each level of the organization, but from all employees. involved.” Gustavo Estay pointed out.


“Norway has made a lot of progress in this regard and certainly our national industry too, the challenge now is to follow this path and achieve better results. For this reason, I thank again the exhibitors who will give us their experiences and new strategies to improve security in the development of the underground world,” he added.

The workshop was welcomed by the Norwegian Ambassador, Jostein Leiro and the president of CTES, Gustavo Estay. Four prominent speakers participated in the event and two blocks of presentations and conversations were developed to address the different national and international safety experiences in tunnel construction.


Ricardo Troncoso from the Institute of Mining Engineers of Chile gave the talk “Vision of mining safety in Chile”. Regarding his presentation, Ricardo highlighted that “there is a lot of criticism from people who do not know the development of mining and the level of associated risk that we constantly have to face.” Therefore, one of the most relevant aspects is “to disseminate more objectively the way in which mining has advanced, developed and grown, protecting its operations in terms of safety, health and environmental aspects.”


Likewise, Ola Kvammen from Incitu AS addressed “Safety in tunnel construction in Norway”, who referred to the need to “work every day to improve the safety environment, which at the end of the day means less loss for any project". Regarding his presentation, Ola Kvammen stated that the intention “was to show the way in which we act regarding safety in projects in Norway. Not as a comparison, but to explain how we work.” In addition, he highlighted the importance of “shotcrete fortification and the legislation that we have to comply with.”


Helle Nilsen presented Data Driven Tunnelling, and gave an introduction to the latest developments in digitalization and computerized tunnelling production, in Norway.



We thank all, including CTES and their memeber organisations that made this event possible.


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