Light Rail Safety and Standards Board ‘adds value to light rail and tram sector’, ORR review finds – SHP

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Railway safety

Health and Safety Practitioner

The Office of Rail and Road (ORR) has released a study which outlines how the Light Rail Safety and Standards Board (LRSSB) adds value to the light rail and tram sector and supports continuous improvements in safety management .

railwayThe rail regulator has made six recommendations after assessing whether the LRSSB is on track to implement the recommendations made by the Rail Accident Investigation Branch following the fatal Sandilands derailment in November 2016.

ORR’s review of the LRSSB found that the Safety and Standards Council provides advice and tools to improve the industry’s understanding of risk.

However, the ORR also highlighted the need for a long-term strategy and plan for the work of the LRSSB, which should set out clear governance and funding arrangements.

ORR’s six recommendations are:

  1. UK tram operators, owners and infrastructure should continue to support the role of a safety and standards body for the light rail sector
  2. The LRSSB should review and update its Terms of Reference to define its role and purpose
  3. The LRSSB should review – in consultation with its members, the Department for Transport (DfT) and the ORR – the current model for voluntary membership and adoption of LRSSB results
  4. The LRSSB should develop a stakeholder engagement strategy to strengthen its collaboration with a wider range of stakeholders, including relevant unions, the Rail Safety and Standards Board (RSSB), road authorities and vehicle manufacturers/ trams
  5. The LRSSB should – in consultation with the DfT and ORR – develop a long-term strategy to clearly define the governance arrangements to provide a work plan
  6. ORR should consider whether there is a continued need for a memorandum of understanding or agreements regarding light rail and trams.

ORR’s Chief Railway Inspector, Ian Prosser CBE, said: “As the UK’s railway safety regulator, we have been monitoring the progress of the LRSSB since its inception in 2019.

“We can see that there is a real interest in continuing to have a safety and standardization organization that meets the specific needs of the light rail and tramway sector.

“These recommendations will also help ensure that the light rail and tram industry continues to have a structured approach to the continuous improvement of safety standards.”

Carl Williams, Chief Executive of the LRSSB, said: “When the organization was established, we invited the ORR to conduct a review of the work of the LRSSB over its first three years of operation, and we now welcome comments contained in this report.

“Going forward, we are committed to implementing its recommendations, and as the LRSSB continues to grow and evolve, we look forward to working with an even wider range of organizations across the sector to improve continuously security through standardization, collaboration, research and sharing. better training.”

To read ORR’s full opinion, click here.

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Louis Theroux and Mandy Hickson

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