|Printable version||E-mail this to a friend|
Commission asks ten Member States to implement the Directive aimed at improving safety of European railways
The European Commission has sent a reasoned opinion to ten Member States formally requesting to fully implement the last amendment to the Railway Safety Directive. Austria, Estonia, Germany, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Sweden and the United Kingdom, have so far failed to bring their national legislation into line with this Directive although obliged to do so by 24 December 2010. The Commission has set a two-month deadline for these Member States to remedy the situation. Should the Member States fail to do so, the Commission may refer the cases to the Court of Justice.
The EU rules
The aim of the Directive 2008/110/EC is to improve the level of safety of the European rail transport system. It provides a legal basis for a common framework for the maintenance of rolling stock: before a rail vehicle is allowed to be put into service, the ”entity” responsible for its maintenance (known as the "entity in charge of maintenance" or ECM) must be identified. For freight wagons, the ECM must be certified according to a system developed by the European Railway Agency and adopted by the Commission on 10 May 2011. Member States had until 24 December 2010 to transpose the Directive into their national legislation and to notify domestic implementation measures to the Commission.
An essential provision of the Directive is that the certificate granted to an ECM is valid throughout the European Union. This provision, which recognises equivalence between the ECMs, is therefore intended to raise the level of railway safety throughout the EU and ensure interoperability.
The reason for yesterday's action
Directive 2008/110/EC has not yet been transposed, or has been transposed only partially, by ten Member States: Austria, Estonia, Germany, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Sweden and United Kingdom.
The practical effect of non-implementation
Failure to implement the directive would prevent achieving the expected level of safety. This will affect not only those countries that have not implemented Directive 2008/110/EC but the whole European single railway area as well.
The next step
If the Member States do not adapt their legislation within the two-month deadline, the Commission may refer the matter to the Court of Justice of the European Union.
For more information on EU infringement procedures, see MEMO/11/312
Latest News from
New launchers to support independence of EU's satellite navigation programme22/08/2014 10:25:00
The EU's satellite navigation programme Galileo has signed a €500 million agreement with Arianespace to provide three Ariane-5 launchers, which will bring an operational Galileo service much closer.
Robots lending a helping hand to build Airbus planes21/08/2014 12:25:00
Trying to squeeze into tight spaces, carrying out highly repetitive tasks and living with back injuries: these everyday realities of working in aviation construction will soon be over. By bringing robots onto the factory floor to carry out the uncomfortable and tedious tasks, the EU-funded project VALERI hopes to place a higher value on human know-how.
Galileo launches two more satellites21/08/2014 10:25:00
Galileo, the EU's satellite navigation programme, has sent two more satellites into space, reaching a total number of 6 satellites in orbit. The launch marks another milestone for Galileo as a step towards a fully-fledged European-owned satellite navigation system.
Mercury: Have your say on the EU implementation of the Minamata Convention20/08/2014 10:25:00
The European Commission has launched an on-line consultation on issues related to the ratification and implementation by the EU of the Minamata Convention on mercury. It is a global treaty that aims to protect human health and the environment from the adverse effects of mercury, and aims to phase out many of its current uses.