In Norway, the investigation of railway accidents is regulated by the following acts and regulations:
Act No 34 of 3 June 2005 on Notification, Reporting and Investigation of Railway Accidents and Railway Incidents etc. (the Railway Investigation Act). The Act applies to railways, including tramways, underground railways, suburban railways and similar modes of guided transport encompassed by the Railways Act. Funicular railways are not included under railways.
Regulations No 378 of 31 March 2006 on Public Investigations of Railway Accidents and Serious Railway Incidents etc. (the Railway Investigation Regulations) were adopted by the Ministry of Transport and Communications pursuant to the Railway Investigation Act.
The EU's Railway Safety Directive 2004/49/EC is incorporated into the Railway Investigation Act.
Serious railway incidents are reported to the investigating authority (the Norwegian Safety Investigation Authority, NSIA) pursuant to Regulations No 379 of 31 March 2006 on the Obligation to Notify and Report Railway Accidents and Railway Incidents (the Notification and Reporting Regulations). The NSIA has personnel on call round the clock. The investigating authority notifies the Norwegian Railway Authority (the supervisory authority).
The purpose of investigating railway accidents and serious railway incidents is to endeavour to clarify the chain of events and causes, to collect and analyse information, draw conclusions and, if relevant, formulate safety recommendations. The objective is to improve railway safety and prevent accidents and incidents.
The NSIA decides the scope of investigations and how they are conducted. The final investigation report is published as soon as possible, and normally no later than 12 months after the railway accident or serious railway incident.
The Rail Department has employees with both operational, technical and theoretical expertise in the railway area.
The Rail Department is led by Department Director Kurt A. Olsen.
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