After a mechanical engineering apprenticeship at the Motor Industry Research Association (MIRA), Richard Booth was promoted to Research Engineer in 1964 studying vehicle safety and durability. He was appointed as a Lecturer in Safety and Health at Aston University in 1972 and received his Chair in 1978. He was elected Professor Emeritus in 2007.
Richard was for many years a part-time safety adviser to a small construction (refractory engineering) company, also Group Safety Adviser for Smith & Nephew (Europe) and the Unilever Group (world-wide). He was, until 2006, one of two Independent Safety, Health and Environment Advisers to Transport for London and a member of the TfL Board’s Safety, Health and Environment Committee. He has published about 150 scientific papers, articles and book chapters and presented in 17 countries world-wide. He has been awarded the Viscount Weir Prize from the Institution of Mechanical Engineers for research on metal fatigue, and the Distinguished Service Award of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents.
He has carried out extensive research covering, for example, machinery safety, component and structural integrity, construction safety, safety culture, human factors, design, development and effectiveness of health & safety management systems including a review of safety audit systems, regulatory compliance regimes, accident investigation methodologies, safety and health practitioner competencies, and accident costing (embracing the criteria for reasonable practicability).