Tuesday 5 July 2016
Railway Security

First UIC Security Week held from 20 – 24 June 2016 in Paris

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During the last statutory assemblies and the 11th World Security Congress organised in New Delhi, UIC decided to launch an additional programme on security in 2016 (focusing on crisis management, interoperability and exchange of security information, training and communication) and to organise a seminar on terrorism on an annual basis considering the good results of the first one held on 16 – 17 June 2015. Migrations and their consequences are now a hot topic for the rail sector in Europe and have been also addressed within the UIC security framework.

In order to facilitate the attendance of a maximum number of people, these events were grouped together in to one “security week”.

The week started with the steering committee of the security platform with discussions on the ongoing work of the UIC security platform as well as the latest Colpofer activities and feedback from the partners: CER, RAILPOL and UITP.

On 21 June, the seminar on terrorism opened with around 60 participants from 20 countries. This year, it focused on the exchange of the various experiences and on stepping out towards the future with the various research projects in which UIC is involved on behalf of its members.

The seminar was very informative and interactive with presentations from America (US Transport Administration, Via Rail Canada), Asia (Indian Railway Protection Force, Japan Railways and Russian Railways) and Europe (European Commission DG Move, French ministry in charge of transport, Swedish Transport Administration, French interior ministry, Belgium and French metro and rail operators, and the Netherlands rail transport operator representing also Colpofer). All the presentations are available in the private security workspace of the UIC extranet.

Mr Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, Director General of UIC, insisted on the importance of this common work at the service of our Members, customers and staff. Rail needs to be innovating constantly, because we not only have to avoid a repeat of the terrorist acts like the ones that we have already seen, but also – and perhaps even more so – to counter the emergence of new forms of terrorism, and we are fully aware that the aggressors will respond and adapt to any countermeasures that we may develop. Research will therefore play a primary role, but above and beyond that we must keep in step with the evolution of our world and our technological environment. Indeed, Security belongs among UIC priorities; it is one of its fundamental values supporting rail activities, in an increasingly threatened context. We are facing new challenges: rail needs to find a balance between security and fluidity; its role is to put security as an element of quality of service, but to keep the advantage of its competitively quick boarding. Rail must stay an open system, with a holistic approach, even if it is dependant on national prescriptions (no international rules like the other modes of transport). New technologies can help to better protect rail transport, some being newly applied. Besides there is interdependence between technologies and Human Factors, which is a crucial point: staff training is an important issue. Finally, it is UIC’s role to ensure an international coherence, to bring together already future solutions for future problems. UIC World Security Congress 2016 will be held in Helsinki from 23 to 25 November 2016, organised in partnership with the Finnish Transport Agency, the FTA, on the general topic of security in railway stations.

After this very successful seminar, three half-day workshops were organised on Benchmarking on Crisis Management (led by DB AG), Interoperability and Exchange of Security-related Information for International Trains (led by PKP PLK), Security Training and Communication (led by SNCF).

Thanks to the members we received excellent contributions for these topics through the questionnaires circulated among the members in March 2016: 31 answers from 22 countries in 5 regions were received.

During each workshop, the analysis of the questionnaires was presented to the participants as well as some best practices. This was followed by very lively discussions on the expectations vis-à-vis the UIC security division and the next steps of the studies.

The members asked the UIC security division to further develop the following topics:

For Benchmarking on Crisis Management (CM)

  • Expand the current results of the benchmark by interviews and workshops with selected rail operators, to get further insight in their CM efforts
  • Collect best / good practices to provide a CM overview / tool box
  • Provide recommendations for minimum CM efforts (organisation, roles, and infrastructures) of a railway company, considering their size and abilities.

For Interoperability and Exchange of Security-related Information

  • Provide models of agreement for exchanging information on security events
  • Prepare a UIC leaflet on a standardised description of a security event
  • Rethink the provision of security information by UIC security division within website and extranet in a more interactive way: design and implement of a Rail Security Hub: unique entry point for railway security questions
  • Organise workshops on demand (at UIC HQ or within railway companies).

For Security Training and Communication

  • Design a Toolbox on two topics:
    • Training principles with recommendations/best practices: checklist with sub topics for training of managers: “if you organise a training programme, do not forget to…”
    • Awareness: sharing of best practices (knowledge management on the existing good practices and examples): gather tools regarding public awareness
  • Organise an Awareness Day on security in transport: for example, one day dedicated to security issues for implementation of actions required (to be defined) – raising awareness among the public and staff on this topic
  • Common module on how to detect suspicious behaviour of individuals

In the light of the European migrant crisis or European refugee crisis which began in 2015, the week closed with an exchange of experiences by rail operators, when a rising number of migrants and refugees made the journey to the European Union (EU) to seek asylum and were affecting the infrastructures and operations of railway companies. Participants from eight countries and representatives from the European Commission discussed the impacts of large groups of refugees in the rail system, the resulting transport and aid requirements and the subsequent organisational or logistics problems that had to be solved. Since migration is a worldwide problem, UIC will introduce a project that facilitates the exchange of experiences and best practices and that will provide organisational and procedural recommendations for its members, to cope with these impacts.

A Second Security week will be organised from 18 to 20 October to present and get feedback on the proposed results.

The final results and the required documentation shall be ready by the end of October 2016 and introduced during the 12th World Security Congress in Helsinki (23 – 25 November, 2016).

All presentations are available in the private area:


For further information on the UIC Security Division please visit: www.uic.org/security

Or contact the security team: security@uic.org

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Gift presented to UIC from Indian Railways
Panel of keynote speakers
From left to right: Mr Beaulieu, Via Rail Canada, Mr Norroy, DG MOVE, Mr Brodin, French Ministry in charge of Transport
Mr Bhagat, Chairman of UIC Security Platform, Indian Railway Protection Force
Mr Loubinoux, UIC Director General
Prof Neubeck, Vice-Chairman of the UIC Security Platform, DBAG
Mr Duncan and Mr Bassett, Transportation Security Administration, USA
From left to right: S.K. Bhagat (Chair of the Security Platform – India IR/RPF), Jerzy Wisniewski (Director of the UIC Fundamental Values Department), Gerd Neubeck (Vice Chair of the Security Platform – Germany, DBAG), Marc Beaulieu and Peter Lambrinakos from Via Rail Canada (Vice-chairmanship to be confirmed by the UIC General Assembly in July 2016)