A safe mode of transport
Europe’s railways are among the safest in the world. The EU is looking to maintain high standards and to harmonise safety requirements EU-wide.
As well as ensuring optimal safety, harmonisation in this area helps improve the compatibility – the interoperability – of national rail systems. Different national safety rules are a major hindrance for new railway companies looking to establish themselves on the market or indeed for any company wanting to use rail infrastructure in different countries.
EU legislation sets the framework for a harmonised approach to rail safety in the EU. It lays down the conditions for granting the safety certification that every railway company must obtain before it can run trains on the European network. Furthermore, it obliges EU Member States to set up national railway safety authorities and independent accident investigation bodies.
Role of the European Railway Agency
The Agency develops common approaches to safety, working closely with stakeholders from the rail sector as well as with national authorities, the EU institutions and other interested parties. Featuring a dedicated Safety Unit, ERA also monitors and reports on rail safety in the EU. For more information :