Proceedings of the

The 33rd European Safety and Reliability Conference (ESREL 2023)
3 – 8 September 2023, Southampton, UK

Bow Tie Analysis (BTA) in a Public Transport Sector During the Covid-19 Pandemic: A Case Study

David José Oliveira da Silva1 and Marcelo Hazin Alencar2

1Transportation Agency of the State of São Paulo - ARTESP, Federal University of Pernambuco - UFPE - Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil.

2Risk Assessment and Modeling in Environment, Assets, Safety, Operations and Nature (REASON), Federal University of Pernambuco - Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil.


Buses represent the road modal in public transport systems and fulfill a social and essential function, providing collective transport for a group of people to carry out their daily activities of work, leisure, consumption, and other tasks of modern life. It also has an economic function, contributing to the circulation and consumption of goods and services. In times of a pandemic, public transport also stands out as a critical infrastructure of urban centers as it contributes to the maintenance of essential activities, especially providing transportation to medical units for health professionals who work on the front lines of combating the pandemic. This paper presents a practical application of the bowtie methodology, analyzing the risks involved in public passenger transport operations during the Covid-19 pandemic. Applying the Bowtie methodology provides a better understanding of the risks and consequences associated with regulatory activity and greater assertiveness of decision-makers to balance the regulatory ecosystem (granting authority, companies, and users). In addition, this study contributes to a better resilience of public passenger transport operations in the face of large-scale/catastrophic events resulting from a health crisis experienced during the Covid-19 pandemic (2020-2022).

Keywords: Public transport, Bowtie analysis, Operational risk assessment, Regulatory agency, Critical infrastructure, Resilient cities.

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