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2018 - March - Hunter/Joseph - Use of Independent Safety Assessment on Railway Proj 2018 - March - Hunter/Joseph - Use of Independent Safety Assessment on Railway Projects

Hugh Hunter

Certifier Australia

Serge Joseph

French and Algerian Ministry of Transport

Regulation of Australian Railways in standardised across Australia and is administered by the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator (ONRSR).
The ONRSR Major Project Guidelines [21] states that ONRSR expects major projects to engage an Independent Safety Assessor who:
Is independent from the delivery organisations
Resources the project based on the scale and complexity of the task
Use Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) with an appropriate mix of competency, qualifications and relevant
experience for the project scope
State government organisations such as Transport for New South Wales (TfNSW) state in their Guide to Independent
Safety Assessment [17], that new or altered assets requiring “safety significant changes” should be subjected to
Independent Safety Assessment (InSA).
There is a general lack of understanding in the railway industry regarding areas such as:
What is Independent Safety Assessment, why is it performed and what is its role in a project
The types of independent assessments that are required to be performed for the fulfillment of different
regulations and standards. This includes the usage of multiple assessment types within a project.
Can any safety assurance body perform independent safety assessments or do these entities have to be
accredited to perform their various independent assessment types?
Who performs the accreditation of an ISA and how is this accreditation recognised in different states and
Where in the project lifecycle does the ISA become involved?
How much of a project does the ISA assess, and how does the ISA ensure that the InSA provides a suitable
focus on the areas of higher risk
How does the ISA work together with the project with regards to observation management and the generation
of ISA reports?
What does the ISA expect the project team to provide for assessment?
What are the tools and techniques utilised by an ISA
The usage of multiple ISAs in project and how an ISA can accept the results provided by other ISAs.
This paper addresses this lack of understanding, providing descriptions of the different independent assessment types,
detailing the role of the ISA, describing the InSA process, and describing the use of accreditation for an ISA and how this
accreditation is recognised throughout the world.


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