About Rail Safety Authority

The Department acts as the Rail Safety Authority for Northern Ireland and is responsible for ensuring Northern Ireland Railways’ (NIR) regulatory compliance with the rail safety regulatory framework.

The Department does this in accordance with the Railway Safety Act (Northern Ireland) 2002 and associated regulations. The statutory function of the Rail Safety Authority in the Department is exercised by Rail Safety Branch.

The Branch is responsible for the monitoring and supervision of NIR’s Safety Management System and for conducting audits and inspections of NIR’s application and practical deployment of its Safety Management System. The Branch also acts as the Competent Authority for interoperability on the rail system.

National Vehicle Register (NVR) – Designation of DfI as Registration Entity for Northern Ireland

The European Commission requires to be notified of Registration Entities (RE) which are responsible for the keeping and updating of the NVR in Northern Ireland. The NVR will register and record details of all rail vehicles which are operated in NI. Its format and content, together with other requirements for its establishment, are set out in EC Decision 2007/756/EC (“the Decision”). The Department as RE will be responsible for the data input process and ensuring that the information recorded in the NVR is accurate. The role of the RE is therefore purely administrative in nature.

The NVR may be viewed below:

Memoranda of Understanding

The Rail Safety Authority (RSA) has in place memoranda of understanding (MoUs) with different bodies to promote effective co-operation between them to ensure the safety of the Northern Ireland rail network.

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