The Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator (ONRSR) and the Australasian Railway Association (ARA) are seeking feedback on a consultation paper setting out proposed changes to data reporting requirements.
The requirements are part of the National Rail Safety Data Strategy, which seeks to deliver a consistent, accurate, complete, valid, and timely national rail safety data set through the implementation of its association Action Plan.
Having a single data set is hoped to assist decision-making in regard to rail safety by having a single point for reporting, said ARA CEO Caroline Wilkie.
“The action plan will help deliver a single source of truth for rail safety data and create a shared safety culture across the whole industry,” she said.
“This will make it easier for people to contribute to and access this crucial data and streamline organisations’ efforts to ensure the safety of rail workers, their customers and stakeholders.”
Collating and standardised reporting data will also enable data to readily available so that it can be used by a range of stakeholders, following a “report once, use many times” principle.
The paper sets out the proposed data set and reporting requirements and is based on consultations conducted in 2020, said ONRSR chief executive, Sue McCarrey.
“Simplifying the collection of data and increasing the amount of data available to rail transport operators and other key stakeholders will better support rail safety decision making across the country.”
The paper proposes a streamlined and simplified reporting framework, with occurrences limited to 21 categories, with 127 sub-categories and 20 other categories removed. These categories are broken up into A, B and C categories, with refinements to reporting windows.
The consultation paper also outlines the critical initial steps towards one national rail safety data set.
Once settled, these findings will be delivered to state and federal Infrastructure and Transport Ministers for consideration later in 2021. If approved, required regulation changes will be progressed through the South Australian parliament, with implementation expected from 1 July 2022.