- Railway Safety Regulations 1999
Railway Safety Regulations 1999
The Railway Safety Regulations 1999 (RSR 99) required the installation of a form of train protection on the railway, and the staged withdrawal of Mark I rolling stock and of rolling stock with hinged doors but without central locking. Post-implementation evaluation shows that RSR have had a positive and real influence on safety related practices in the rail industry.
We carried out an evaluation of RSR 99 in 2007. The consultation was live between 30 May 2007 and 13 July 2007. A total of 62 organisations were consulted and we received 12 responses.
- Most respondents agreed that the basic objectives of the Regulations had clearly been met with the completion of the Train Protection and Warning System (TPWS) fitment programme and withdrawal of Mark I rolling stock (apart from heritage vehicles operated on the mainline for which exemptions have been granted);
- There was general agreement that the fitment of TPWS has been successful in terms of reduction in signals passed at danger (SPAD) risk;
Almost all respondents agreed that the withdrawal of Mark I vehicles had resulted in the introduction of newer, more modern trains with associated benefits;
- More than 58% of respondents suggested that the Regulations should be retained to ensure that the higher safety specifications which they require the industry to meet continue to be delivered;
- Some pointed out that speeding up the installation of TPWS may have resulted in reliability issues with equipment that was not fully developed, and was sourced from a single supplier. This may have contributed to around 10% of the total in-service failures in most fleets; and
- One third of respondents did not see the value in retaining the Regulations and suggested that the key requirements of the legislation could be reflected in the Railway Group Standards and The Railways and Other Guided Transport Systems (Safety) Regulations 2006 (ROGS).
- Without a clear case to support immediate changes to RSR 99 when this review was completed, outcomes were focussed upon having identified areas for future improvement.
Red Tape Challenge Review
The Red Tape Challenge (RTC) is a cross-Whitehall programme, and is led by a small central team across Cabinet Office and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills to review all regulations in force across a range of industry sectors. The starting point of the RTC is that ‘a regulation should go or its aim be achieved in a different, non-government way, unless there is a clear and good justification for government being involved. And even where there is a good case for this, we [the government] must sweep away unnecessary bureaucracy and complexity, end gold-plating of EU directives, and challenge overzealous administration and enforcement.
Review of regulations concerning the rail industry was carried out in 2011 and a public consultation on initial findings was completed in November 2011.
Railway Safety (Miscellaneous Provisions) Regulations 1997, the Railway Safety Regulations 1999 and the Railway Safety (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2001 were identified as being in scope for review. We agreed that it was timely to revisit the review work which we had carried out in 2007, focussing on the scope to improve all three sets of regulations. Our work on this is underway and a public consultation on proposals for revision is planned for spring 2013.
Page updated: January 2013
- Evaluation of the Railway Safety Regulations 1999 ( PDF 60 Kb).
- Railway Safety Regulations 1999 - TPS and Mark 1 rolling stock - Background ( PDF 31 Kb).
- Responses to RSR evaluation ( PDF 1334 Kb).