Safe railways for Australia

Safety Bulletin - Rolling Stock Maintenance - November 2018


22 November 2018

Following recent incidents, and a review of the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator’s own compliance and inspection activities, ONRSR is reminding all operators of the important role rolling stock maintenance plays in avoiding safety critical component failures.

Of particular importance is ensuring attention to detail in relation to maintenance standards, processes and procedures, guidance and documentation, that available data suggests are collectively significant contributors in rolling stock component failures.

There are five key issues operators should be aware of when reviewing their maintenance programs. These are:

  • Documentation  in Safety Management Systems

Operators should ensure that standards are always reviewed and kept current to reflect changes of rolling stock and the resultant maintenance requirements, and that they have access to all relevant standards.

  • Documented processes and procedures

Staff should have access to, and an intimate knowledge of, quality documented processes and procedures that will allow for thorough maintenance practices and for the collection and presentation of effective records.

  • Calibration of test equipment 

The presence of procedures or records for the calibration and maintenance of equipment used to inspect, or test rolling stock is a must for all rolling stock operators. This equipment should only be used when in proper working order and correctly calibrated.

  • Documented competency/qualifications

Operators must ensure their staff have the skills necessary to complete many and varied maintenance tasks and that they have access to the training required to maintain their competency. All qualifications should be documented and current, including those of sub-contractors.

  • Contractor performance 

Rolling Stock Operators must be diligent in having oversight of contractors’ activities through the life of their agreements. This will provide clarity for contractors through their tender/contract review processes, by documenting the most appropriate inspection, maintenance and overhaul standards. Similarly operators should ensure contractors are fully aware of the relevant aspects of their safety management system.

For further information email us at contact@onrsr.com.au

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