Spain to establish independent rail safety body

Spain’s Ministry of Development has backed the creation of an independent rail safety authority in the wake of the Santiago de Compostela crash that killed 79.

The Agencia Estatal de Seguridad Ferroviaria (State Railway Safety Agency) will be responsible for issuing operating licenses and safety certification, as well as developing a security policy framework and managing the Special Register of Railway Companies.

The new body will have total access to information held by train operators and infrastructure manager Adif, as well as the power to carry out neccessary inspections.

Another element of the authority’s role will involve developing an active dialogue with other safety bodies around Europe.