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Report Details

Committee Name:

Constitutional Affairs Committee (1989 - 2001)


Legislative Council
Report Type:Report


Rail Safety Bill 1998
Report No:25
No of Pages:54
Physical Location:Legislative Council Committee Office

Presentation Date:


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Hide details for Executive SummaryExecutive Summary
1. Executive Summary

1.1 The principal purpose of the Rail Safety Bill ("the Bill") is to clearly set out standards and criteria that all persons wishing to own or operate a railway will need to meet in order to be accredited owners or operators.

1.2 The standards to be applied will be national, based on industry best practice and subject to ongoing development through the work of the Standards Association of Australia. It features mutual recognition of railway accreditation granted in other Australian jurisdictions and incorporates a process of conciliation and mediation as a means of resolving disputes.

1.3 The objectives of the Bill are purely safety related and directed at the promotion of ongoing safety improvements. The purpose of any inquiries or investigations will be to determine the cause and means of avoiding further occurrences of serious incidents or accidents and not the determination of liability or apportionment of blame.

2. Recommendations

2.1 The Committees report makes recommendations in relation to each and every clause of the Bill and, where appropriate, provides comment on the clause. The Committee has recommended that all clauses should be passed with the exception of the following clauses -

(a)clause 4 which deals with the Application of the Act and, in particular, the exemption of specified classes (see pg 7);
(b)clause 31 which deals with Railway employees and, in particular, the issue of performing rail safety work while affected by drugs or alcohol (see pg 25); and
(c)clause 50 which deals with Self-incrimination and the protection afforded to a person providing evidence to an inquiry (see pg 41).
    The Committee has recommended that clauses 4, 31 and 50 be fully debated in the House.