Legislation passed by Queensland Parliament will improve the productivity and efficiency of the state’s rail operators, through greater consistency of national safety requirements.
Deputy Premier and Minister for Transport, Jackie Trad, said the Rail Safety National Law (Queensland) Bill 2016 reforms would bring a single national accreditation regime for rail transport operators, removing duplication of auditing, monitoring and compliance processes.
“Under the reforms, the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator will become the rail safety regulator in Queensland and the Australian Transport Safety Bureau will operate as the rail safety investigator for no-blame investigations,” Ms Trad said.
“This is a significant step forward and will improve the way safety risks are identified and managed by industry.
“By implementing these reforms in Queensland, we are cutting red tape for industry and making our railways safer.”
Ms Trad said all permanent rail regulation staff currently working in Queensland would be offered a position with the National Regulator.
“The reforms have also received strong support from the Queensland’s 66 accredited rail operators,” said Ms Trad.
“The National Rail Safety Regulator and the Department of Transport and Main Roads will work together to provide rail operators with information and educational resources to guide them through the changes.
“Rail is essential for passengers travelling throughout our vast state as well as moving bulk commodities, coal, minerals, agricultural products and livestock.
“We are proud of Queensland’s excellent safety record and we thank our rail operators for remaining diligent, putting safety first and working collaboratively with Transport and Main Roads over many years.”
Ms Trad said the travelling public would not be impacted by the amendments.
Until the transition, Transport and Main Roads will continue to regulate and investigate rail safety in Queensland.