4th Railway Package - Guide


Since 1991, the European railway sector has constantly been reformed by the European Union. The 4th Railway Package, which was adopted in 2016 is by far the largest and most complex legal initiative introduced so far. The 4th Railway Package consists of a political and a technical pillar which introduce substantial reforms for all stakeholders concerned. 

The Guide below (drop-down menu) illustrates in four different chapters the reforms in the field of vehicle authorisation, safety certification and ERTMS trackside approval as well as the new role of the European Union Agency for Railways as ‘frequently asked questions’. Given the fact that the implementation of the 4th Railway Package is an ongoing process, the Guide will be updated on a regular basis, in line with the progress of the reforms being made on EU level.

Christian Rausch
Chairman of the Group of Representative Bodies (GRB)

  • It is foreseen that all applications for national and international safety certifications will have to be submitted to the ERA via its IT portal (One-Stop Shop -OSS) ;
  • The ERA will be responsible for multi-country safety certifications (the single safety certificate) and could be responsible for single country safety certificates if the applicant choses so;
  • The ERA can outsource the processing of the applications to individual experts via a pool of external experts (incl. those of NSAs);
  • The ERA will charge fees & charges for the processing of the applications for safety certification following a pre-defined calculation method;
  • In the case of a positive opinion, the ERA will grant the safety certification to the applicant and allocates a so-called EIN (European Identification Number).