ORR data shows Britain’s railways 'one of the safest'
25 May 2022
THE OFFICE of Rail and Road (ORR) – the primary producer of official statistics for Britain’s railway – has published new data showing that Britain continues to have one of the safest railways in Europe.
ORR’s analysis found that Britain ranks first for ‘whole society’ safety risk, which combines the overall average of number fatalities and serious injuries across five risk categories for passenger, employee, level crossing user, trespasser, and other risks.
For passenger safety risk, ORR reports that Britain ranks eighth overall but performs favourably in comparison to other European countries against similarly large railway networks.
For employee safety risk, Britain is third when compared to other European countries. The only countries with a lower average number were Ireland and Finland, which have considerably smaller rail networks.
Britain was also third for level crossing user safety risk; the only countries with a lower average number were Ireland and Switzerland.
For trespasser safety risk, Britain is fourth compared with other European countries behind Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Slovenia.
The rail regulator’s report assessed safety performance of Britain’s mainline railway and the achievement of safety targets and concluded there was acceptable safety performance in 2020.
ORR’s HM chief inspector of Railways, Ian Prosser CBE said, “Britain continues to have one of the safest railways in Europe, and thankfully, incidents such as those that occurred at Carmont in August 2020 are very rare.
“Safety targets are imposed to ensure a minimum level of safety is achieved and it is important our railway continues to strive for better.”