Chief Executive message
National Rail Safety Regulator
The start date (20 January 2013) for the new national rail safety system is drawing closer and ITSR continues to work closely with both the Project Office and the National Rail Safety Regulator, Rob Andrews, to make the transition as smooth as possible.
In NSW we reached a major milestone this week when the Rail Safety (Adoption of National Law) Bill 2012 was passed by both houses of the NSW Parliament. The bill introduces the legislative changes necessary to enable ITSR to deliver services on behalf of the NRSR in NSW.
ITSR’s service agreement with the NRSR and the delegations under which it will operate are still being finalised. We will provide details once this work is completed.
Key points to remember as we move towards the NRSR start date:
- ITSR will continue to deliver rail safety regulation in NSW after 20 January 2013 but under delegation and the authority of the National Rail Safety Regulator. ITSR will operate the NSW branch of the NRSR.
- The Rail Safety National Law will apply in NSW from January 2013 – the Rail Safety Act 2008 and Regulations will be repealed. NSW-specific requirements for fatigue risk management have been included in the National Law, and NSW-specific regulations for drug and alcohol risk management will be retained through the NSW applied law.
- Rail transport operators (RTOs) accredited under the Rail Safety Act 2008 will not have to re-apply for accreditation. Any organisation applying for accreditation from the date of commencement will need to comply with the National Law.
- Transitional provisions for the new National Law are still being developed and will be contained in regulations. The transition period for operators to comply with changes to the legislation will be no less than two years.
ITSR will provide more NSW-specific information on its website in the coming weeks. Frequently asked questions (FAQs) and other material is available on the NRSR Project Office website at www.nrsrproject.sa.gov.au.
To ensure ITSR is effectively positioned to meet those demands, we will implement a new organisational structure from 1 November. The biggest change will be the merger of the Operations and Transport Safety Improvement Divisions into a single Operations Group overseen by Simon Foster in the new role of Chief Operating Officer.
Simon will be supported by Adrian Rowland (Executive Director, Transport Safety Improvement), Colin Holmes (Managing Director, Rail Compliance and Enforcement) and Grant Burton (A/Managing Director, Strategic Rail Projects).
The reorganisation will integrate and focus ITSR’s rail safety regulatory capacity and ensure our service delivery is better coordinated. I am confident the new structure will maximise the value our capable and committed management and staff can deliver to the NRSR and the NSW community.
In all this change ITSR must keep focused to ensure we preserve our current level of safety oversight and regulatory reach in NSW rail operations.