Wel­come

Rail (UK) - - Safety Spe­cial -

Britain’s rail­ways have never been safer. We have the safest sys­tem in Europe and have achieved con­sis­tent im­prove­ment in stan­dards over the past few years, lead­ing to a hugely im­por­tant achieve­ment - for the first time ever, there were no work­force fa­tal­i­ties in 2015.

Of course, this does not mean that we can sit back and re­lax. If any­thing, there is more pres­sure, now that we have achieved such heights, to main­tain that record and to im­prove the ar­eas that have not en­joyed the same im­prove­ment - such as the slightly in­creased risk of harm to pas­sen­gers at sta­tions and the high level of earth­work fail­ures.

Safety on the rail­way is the re­spon­si­bil­ity of every­one who works on it, but of course there al­ways has to be some­one there to en­sure that stan­dards are main­tained, that the law is be­ing ap­plied, and that every­one is go­ing home safe. That’s where the Of­fice of Rail and Road (ORR) comes in. The reg­u­la­tor has just re­leased its lat­est An­nual Health and Safety Re­port ( RAIL 806).

In this Safety spe­cial, Di­rec­tor of Rail­way Safety and HM Chief In­spec­tor of Rail­ways Ian Prosser tells RAIL about his pri­or­i­ties and where he wants to see im­prove­ment (page 44). Com­pla­cency is not an op­tion for Prosser.

RSSB (Rail Safety and Stan­dards Board) de­scribes the land­mark mo­ment that was the re­lease of the in­dus­try’s first Health and Safety Strat­egy in March, and we show­case some of the good work be­ing done by com­pa­nies such as Kelvin TOPSET (page 67) and Car­il­lion (page 50).

And to prove that an in­spec­tor’s life is not spent sit­ting be­hind a com­puter screen scru­ti­n­is­ing num­bers, we get out and about on the rail­way with ORR (page 52) and RAIB (Rail Ac­ci­dent In­ves­ti­ga­tion Branch, page 62) in­spec­tors, to un­der­stand just how im­por­tant they are in keep­ing up safety stan­dards.

Our safety record is some­thing to be truly proud of, so much so that other coun­tries are look­ing to us to show them just how we man­age it (page 68). STE­FANIE BROWNE As­sis­tant Edi­tor RailRe­view

ALAMY.

ORR in­spec­tors pro­vide as­sis­tance to a num­ber of rail­ways around the world, in­clud­ing the Dubai Metro (see page 68).

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