Home Infrastructure Network Rail invites proposals to change standards

Network Rail invites proposals to change standards

Network Rail is hoping to see greater innovation, cost efficiency and third-party funding in the rail network by asking contractors, suppliers and stakeholders to recommend changes to its standards.

These standards – that is the detailed requirements that underpin how the railway and the delivery of improvement projects are run – exist to ensure Britain has a safe, high-performing and cost-efficient railway, but they are often seen as overly complex and adding unnecessary cost.

In partnership with the Railway Industry Association (RIA) and a number of key suppliers and stakeholders, Network Rail has developed a new standards challenge process.

As part of the process, suppliers and other stakeholders are now able to submit a standards challenge application if they consider a standard to be incorrect, not enable best practice, or drive increased cost without a comparable benefit.

All submitted challenges will be reviewed by Network Rail.


Like this story? Follow us on Facebook to keep up to date on rail industry news


Network Rail chief engineer Jon Shaw said: “We’ve recently updated our 400 most critical standards but to ensure they always represent current best practice and constantly strive to safely reduce the cost of the railway, we need the help of our wider industry partners as well as experts from other industries and universities.

“The launch of the standards challenge process is the lever for this, providing genuine recognition and incentives to propose more efficient ways of both enhancing and maintaining our railway.”

RIA technical director David Clarke said that the standards challenge was a key recommendation of the Hansford Review into contestability.

He added that it provides rail suppliers with a tool to “question overly rigorous standards” to unlock innovation and reduce costs.

The move is part of Network Rail’s ‘Open for Business’ programme – a series of reforms designed to make it easier for third parties to fund, finance or deliver work on the railway, which itself is part of wider agenda to make tax-payer-funded Network Rail function like a private sector business.

Click here for Network Rail’s standards challenge application.


Read more: Network Rail awards Balfour Beatty £115m tamper contract


 

Recommended

RailStaff December: Railway royalty

https://issuu.com/railmedia/docs/railstaff-december-19

Driver retires after 51 years in the cab

A 69-year-old man who is believed to be one of Britain’s longest-serving train drivers was given a special send-off by colleagues at...

West Coast appointments

Phil Whittingham remains as the managing director for services on what was formerly known as the InterCity West Coast franchise as he...

Christmas work

An army of 20,000 workers will be tasked with delivering 386 rail improvement projects over the Christmas period. Although...

Meet the rail industry heroes of 2019

The room falls silent. Bums occupy the edges of seats while the audience’s gaze locks onto the presenter’s lips as he prises...