This Directive lays down provisions to ensure the development and improvement of the safety of the Union rail system and improved access to the market for rail transport services by:
In 2004, the Railway Safety Directive 2004/49/EC was adopted to create a common European regulatory framework for safety, i.e. the tasks and responsibilities related to a safety management system (SMS).
The Directive introduced common safety methods (CSMs), developed by ERA to provide a common approach to assess the level of safety and performance of all actors (RUs, IMs, wagon keepers, etc.) at EU level and in Member States. It introduced a certification scheme for entities in charge of maintenance (ECM) of freight wagons and required Member States to develop a system of national safety rules.
Directive 2004/49/EC was complemented by Directive 2008/57/EC (interoperability) and 2008/68/EC (inland transport of dangerous goods).
The EC adopted Regulation 445/2011/EU introducing a system of certification of entities in charge of maintenance for freight wagons.
⇒ With each Directive, the EU extended the scope of safety and strengthened the role of the EU vs the Member States. However, the powers and the status of the ERA as such remained unchanged.
Directive 2016/798 extends the scope of safety whilst centralising supervision on EU level. This is achieved by making ERA the single body for granting single safety certificates and by creating new bodies, tools and processes with the ERA to allow it to exercise its new mandate.
The Directive applies to:
The Directive does NOT apply to (unless Member States decide otherwise):
The main changes in 2016/798 are summarised below:
Common Occurrence Reporting (COR):
⇒ The future cooperation between NSAs and the ERA will require the cooperation agreements, audit tools to be approved and NSAs to agree with the usage conditions of ERA’s application tool (OSS), the appeal processes and the fees & charges related to certifications.
⇒ Applicants will have to get prepared for a new procedure with so far undefined costs (time, experts, ERA, etc.).
⇒ The ERA Board of Appeal can overrule the opinion of a NSA and thus overrule national interests.
⇒ The Executive Director of the ERA can overrule the Appeal Body.
⇒ Disclaimer: The final text will be adopted early 2018
There are several open issues: