International Union of Railway Medical Services

The UIMC Management Committee met on 11 April 2014 in Paris at UIC headquarters. The Management Committee of the UIMC is composed of the Chairman, the Vice-Chairman, the Secretary General, the Treasurer and five persons elected by the General Assembly.

The role of the Management Committee is to:

  • Prepare and enforce the decisions of the UIMC General Assembly relating to the scientific activities of the UIMC
  • Draw up and execute the budgets, under the supervision of the General Assembly
  • Liaise between the various UIC bodies and authorities
  • Ensure upkeep of archives and any useful documents.

The Chairman, Dr Voumard, opened the meeting and welcomed the Management Committee members, with the minutes of the last meeting held on 8 October 2013 in Sydney was approved first of all. He reminded participants that on the afternoon of 10 April, the Vice-Chairman, the Secretary General, the Treasurer and himself, met

Thierry Bera, Director of the UIC Finance Department and Firdaous OUTAHR, UIC financial controller. They controlled the accounts and explained the financial situation at 31 December 2013. It has been decided that the UIMC contribution 2014 invoices should be sent by the beginning of June 2014 before the next Congress and General Assembly. A reminder will be sent at the end of August to all members who have not paid their fees. Participation in the congress depends on the payment of UIMC member fees. Dr Voumard especially thanked Thierry Bera and his team for their work and support.

Meryem Belhaj (UIC) informed the Management Committee about the activities of the Safety Platform and especially the Occupational Health and Safety group and Human Factors working group. She also summarised the content of the international workshop on human factors in investigation of accidents/incidents held in Paris from 10 – 11 February 2014.

Peter Gerhardt, UIC Safety Unit Manager, stressed the importance of participating in such international activities. He invited UIMC members to suggest special items connected to Safety, as UIC is investing a great deal in this issue.

Dr. Voumard spoke about the UIMC and ERA relationship and insisted on the importance of this cooperation for the future. He reminded the committee members that Dr Palma, Vice Chairman of the UIMC, and himself were invited to Lille by ERA in 2010. An ERA representative attended the UIMC congress in 2012 and it was clear that they had to continue the collaboration.

Dr Voumard required the participants to express their opinion on the last version of the Vademecum. The group decided to collect comments once more from UIMC members and to organise a working meeting with specific members in Bern on 30 June and 1 July 2014.

Concerning the working groups, Dr Palma explained that through the CER, the UIMC is in connection with EJR (East Japan Railway Company). The Japanese Company requested a partnership on the application on electroencephalographic and psychological examination. In order to answer this request, Dr Palma consulted with DB, SBB AG, ONCF, CFL-Luxembourg, Hungarian Railway, B-Holding, RFI, and SPA.

Dr Gravert reminded participants that the UIMC extranet has been updated and that the members should register to be able to access to it.

Dr Cothereau informed the audience that Public Transportation Company of Berlin asked to become a member of UIMC. This will be confirmed at the next General Assembly

Dr Foss, UIMC treasurer, presented the preliminary financial report of 2013 which was approved by the management committee.

Dr Fònyad from Hungarian Railway Health Care Services presented the programme of the next congress and welcomed all the participants to come to Budapest from 30 September to 3 October 2014.

The UIMC annual congress facilitates contacts between railway medical officers with the aim of exchanging information and medical knowledge through communication of specialist papers on railway medicine, regular inter-disciplinary and international exchange of medical knowledge.

All information is available at the following link:

Save the date: UIMC Congress 30 September – 3 October 2014, art’otel Budapest

For further information, please contact: Meryem Belhaj, UIC Senior Advisor International Training and Human Factors: or Dr Pierre-Albert Voumard:

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4th UIC/ILCAD international drawing contest for children

The 4th UIC/ILCAD international drawing contest for children organised as part of ILCAD to be held on 3 June 2014, has once again been a great success. UIC takes this opportunity to thank all the participants, teachers, parents and railway colleagues for their excellent response and their contribution to this new edition.

  • Over 600 drawings (+20% compared to 2013)
  • Participating countries: mainly Poland but also Belgium, India, Republic of Ireland, Latvia, Mongolia, Portugal, Russia, Slovakia, Sri Lanka, UK.
  • 6500 votes within 2 weeks!!!
  • 3 winners (among 5 contestants) in the “disabled children” category
  • 10 winners in the 4 – 7 year age group and 10 winners in the “8 – 12 age group”
1° Uugangargal D Mongolia 6 yrs

2° Bhadra Sinimol India 7 yrs

3° Martyna Klos Poland 7yrs

4° Coelhinhos Portugal 5-6 yrs

5° Aniels Lepuhovs Latvia 6 yrs

6° Kacper Janiak Poland 7 yrs

7° Natalia Jakimiuk Poland 6 yrs

8° Wojtek Peregrim Poland 6 yrs

9° Aleksander Czebatura Poland 7 yrs

10° Magdalina Poland 7 yrs

1° Simon Sinka Slovakia

2° Paththini Gamage Nandun Hesala Sri Lanka 9 yrs

3° Tadeas Wagner Slovakia 9 yrs

4° Jovi Fenning Northern Ireland 9 yrs

5° Nicole Marzecha Poland 12 yrs

6° Yekaterina Chizhova Russia 9 yrs

7° Milena Gorny Poland 12 yrs

8° Natalia Buchaj Poland 12 yrs

9° Natalia Jarus Poland 8 yrs

10° Natalia Wrzeszcz Poland 9 yrs

1° Wiktoria Karolak 13 yrs

2° Wiktoria Gregorczyk 15 yrs

3° Damian Cuch 11 yrs

The winning drawings have been uploaded to and to the ILCAD Facebook page.

Save the date for ILCAD on 3 June 2014 in Lisbon, Portugal :

You are all kindly invited to take part in the ILCAD 2014 international conference on level crossing safety with experts from different countries and sectors (road, rail, institutions and specialists in human factors, in education…) to take place in Lisbon, Portugal. The event will be kindly hosted by REFER and followed by a press conference.

The full programme will be available soon.

For further information please contact Isabelle Fonverne:

4 Votes

Average rating: 4.5 / 5


5th edition of UIC Energy Efficiency Days (EED) jointly organised with SNCB and Infrabel from 16 – 19 June 2014 in Antwerp

It will be the historical city of Antwerp in Belgium this time that will host the next UIC Energy Efficiency Days conference (, jointly organised by UIC, SNCB and Infrabel, from 16 – 19 June 2014.

After four years – the last one was held in 2009 in Tours, France, together with SNCF – the major actors of railways and transport will come back to discuss Energy Efficiency during the two-day event.

Saved energy is the cheapest, cleanest, safest energy we can use; this is the main message of this year’s event with the main motto: “Energy efficiency, the best fuel to move our trains!”

The conference, that will be opened by UIC Chairman Vladimir Yakunin, President of Russian Railways RZD, will see the participation of representatives of the most important institutions dealing with energy and transport at European and international level.

To open the high-level panel session of Day 1 of the conference, Energy Vision and Trends for 2030 and Beyond, will be the International Energy Agency, with whom UIC is strengthening its increasingly important cooperation thanks to the joint Handbook published every year on Energy consumption and Co2 emission of word railway sector (

The contribution of the World Resource Institute, the European Environment Agency, the European Commission with DG Move and DG Energy, among others, and more will follow to address a wide range of topics concerning energy use within the rail sector: from prices to government policy, security of supply, future availability of renewable energy, electricity market and much more.

UIC Members will be the leading actors of the afternoon of Day 1 of the conference: a high-level railway panel session will bring together top representatives of railway companies from Europe and from across the globe, to discuss the strategic role that energy efficiency might play in everyday railway business.

The debate will be followed by the session: the Voice of Members, best practice on energy efficiency from all over the world, an important appointment where members will have the possibility to share with a large audience what they are doing or planning to do to improve energy efficiency in their companies.

While Day 1 is devoted to strategic and policy issues, Day 2 of the conference will be dedicated, as is tradition, to technical focus.

This year 12 technical workshops are planned, addressing a wide range of technical topics: from efficiency in electric and diesel traction, to energy saving in long term planning, non-traction energy consumption, load factor, metering and billing, regulation and standardisation updating to good data management and tracking of electricity and Guarantees of Origin!

The rail system is both a major energy consumer and also one of the most energy-efficient transport modes. It can represent the key solution to the challenge of answering the increasing demand for transport with a sustainable solution. Investing in energy-efficiency is essential to meet this challenge.

Two additional important parallel events will complete the comprehensive overview on energy efficiency provided by the conference: the Mid-term conference of MERLIN (, the EU co-funded project dealing with the investigation on the viability of an integrated management system to achieve an optimised energy usage in European mainline railway systems and the 9th edition of the annual appointment of ERESS (, the European partnership between Infrastructure Managers that deals with metering, billing and energy data exchange.

Do not miss these important meetings dates with Energy Efficiency: if not done yet, Register soon!

There is a limited number of places.

Please visit the EED website:

For further information please contact Veronica Aneris:

7 Votes

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Seals on international rail freight shipments

When the liberalisation of rail freight transport began in Europe, there were constant efforts to eliminate formalities at border crossings in order to speed up the international carriage of goods by rail. These included the attachment of seals to covered wagons and closed intermodal transport units to comply with customs requirements and to provide evidence in transport law issues. In May 2007, a new UIC leaflet, UIC Leaflet 426 on standardised railway seals – Europlombs – was published in order to resolve difficulties arising from railway undertakings using seals with very different markings and technical features.

This leaflet has since demonstrated its value. To further improve the competitiveness, quality and security of the international carriage of goods by rail, however, the Working Group on Seals set up within the CER Customs Group has undertaken a thorough revision of the leaflet. The aim is to make it more user-friendly and also provide answers to numerous new questions relating to the seals and their use. At its meeting on 16 October 2013, the Working Group on Seals, in which the CIT is also represented to deal with aspects of transport law and the provisions covering its implementation, finalised the draft of the new leaflet, which was recently approved by members of the UIC Freight Forum in a vote by correspondence.

Approval of the new leaflet will result in a number of amendments to the CIT Freight Traffic Manual (GTM-CIT) that were accepted during the previous meeting of the CIM Committee that was held on 25 March 2014. To simplify the application of the provisions on seals, three new appendices will now be included in the GTM-CIT:

  • Appendix 1 “Sealing irregularities”: this appendix is presented in tabular form and specifies what action is to be taken in the event of sealing irregularities, with a distinction made between irregularities that are noted on dispatch, during the journey or on arrival at their destination, and whether the consignments are under customs supervision or not;
  • Appendix 2 “Addresses of contact persons responsible for dealing with issues relating to seals”: on the CIT website, the section entitled “CIT members’ address book” will be supplemented with an appropriate new directory;
  • Appendix 3 “Flow chart for attaching seals to freight wagons in international transport”: this appendix is presented in the form of a diagram and is provided as an example only.

These amendments will come into effect on 1 July 2014.

(Source: CIT)

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IRRB Plenary Meeting (Paris, 15 April 2014)

The Plenary Meeting of the IRRB was officially opened by Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, UIC Director General. He mentioned that it was a particular pleasure to welcome the IRRB Plenary at the UIC Headquarters in the midst of a week full of important research events such as TRA as well as the WCRR EXE and ORG meetings. He mentioned that the Plenary Meeting in Sydney demonstrated that much had been achieved during the previous three years, working with the IRRB Strategy, such as the UIC Research & Innovation Awards, the Rail Research Portal, the new special UIC membership category for academic support to the UIC members’ research activities. However, much work lies still ahead as has been described in the new IRRB strategy document for the next three years.

IRRB chairman Boris Lapidus thanked the UIC and IRRB members for the support and would like to aim to achieve a “union of railway researchers” in the near future to support the research activities of the UIC members. Also he would like to strengthen the prestige and influence of the UIC Global Research & Innovation Awards (with the support of sponsors) as well as to streamline the system of knowledge dissemination. All necessary actions are well described in the new IRRB strategy and it is important to make good progress with the implementation of the plans.

During the plenary meeting the vice-chairmen leading the Strategy Working Groups implementing the IRRB Strategy Document, presented the work carried out and the progress made. Building on this, the new team of vice-chairmen presented their ideas for the implementation of the five areas as described in the new Strategic Document (2014 – 2016) which are:

  • (Area 01) – Developing a global Vision for Rail
  • (Area 02) – Definition of global research priority areas + needs for global standardisation
  • (Area 03) – World class research capacity plan
  • (Area 04) – Dissemination and exchange of knowledge & information
  • (Area 05) – UIC Global Rail Research & Innovation Awards

This was followed by a short discussion about the Limited Affiliate UIC Membership category especially designed to include research centres and academia in the work of the IRRB. One of the first new potential members UBIMET from Austria – represented by Stefan Eisenbach – presented their work in advising OBB in the field of climate change and natural hazards forecasting and mitigation.

Finally some information was given about S2R, Horizon 2020 1st Call, the UIC TALENT project, Challenge 2050 and the RTSE documents. The planning of the 2014 plenary meetings and telephone conference rounded up this Plenary IRRB meeting.

For further information please contact Dennis Schut:

1 vote

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Participation of UIC in Transport Research Arena 2014

The 5th edition of the Transport Research Arena (TRA) was organised in Paris from 14 – 17 April.

TRA is a high level scientific conference dealing with European and national research activities and all aspects of R&D from basic sciences, socioeconomic research to applied sciences and demonstration activities, thus covering all surface transport modes, rail, road, waterborne and their interfaces.

UIC presented several European co-funded projects at Scientific and Technical sessions and on its stand

During the four days of the conference, several UIC Senior Advisors were invited to take part in Scientific and Technical sessions to talk about their activities and more specifically about the achievements of on-going European co-funded projects, including Capacity4Rail, Protectrail, Mainline, Satloc, Spectrum, Sustrail.

A certain number of projects were also showcased on UIC’s stand in TRA exhibition area, including presentations on the SUSTRAIL (presented by Clemente Fuggini, Deputy project coordinator, Consorzio TRAIN D’Appolonia) and SPECTRUM projects (presented by Ross Jackson, Newrail) dealing with rail freight issues, Capacity4Rail (presented by Laurent Schmitt, UIC) addressing issues for a high capacity European railway system for 2030/2050, and the RESTRAIL and PROTECTRAIL projects regarding security (presented by Marie-Hélène Bonneau and José Pires, UIC).

The 2014 edition of the TRA conference was also an opportunity to present the rail sector’s business-led vision for the future European railway system “Challenge 2050” ( that the UIC published on behalf of the Sector.

It was also the opportunity to showcase the recently published “Rail Technical Strategy Europe” (RTSE) ( that describes the ROC’s strategy to deliver the technical pillar of the Challenge 2050 vision. Discussions around rail research and innovation also concentrated on SHIFT²RAIL, the future Joint Undertaking which should be officially launched by the beginning of this summer.

Participation of UIC in the Strategic Session “Rail as an Attractive and Sustainable Mode for the Future”

In one of the two strategic sessions focused on Rail, Jean-Pierre Loubinoux explained his “dream” about Rail in the heart of the global transportation system, building on the basis of the recently published Rail Technical Strategy for Europe (RTSE).

His speech is available here:

Ralph Mueller (DB) supported the content of the previous presentation and explained his vision of a well integrated system and said that the many changes which are happening give him hope that the borders between the modes of transport will significantly be reduced by innovation. He also addressed the developments in autonomous driving in road transport, which he labelled as a risk but also as an opportunity for rail. More emphasis should be given to the specific strengths of rail transport such as for instance the pleasant environment of travelling in the high speed trains which can only be created by rail. He underlined the opportunities of the S2R initiative but stated that the input from the rail operators is urgently needed.

Daniel Cadet of Alstom reacted to the statement of moderator Christopher Irwin of the EPF that Rail is usually the last choice of travellers. According to Mr Cadet Rail is now becoming the choice of the people! He proceeded to address many of the global megatrends influencing transport. One of the main issues he mentioned was the high cost of the rail system and especially of trains which are not standardised and often built for specific customers in low quantities. Like the car industry it should be possible for the cost of maintenance to become affordable. He preferred to be pragmatic instead of Jules Verne-like dreams he said.

Professor Mark Robinson of NewRail demonstrated that rail is well ahead of all other modes of transport in the reduction of CO2. The interesting panel session was followed by a lively discussion between the panel members and the audience.
Professor Manuel Pereira would see removing all borders in rail transport, replacing national based stakeholders by efficient business men as the solution for rail.

Liam Breslin of DG Research asked himself if we are moving fast enough with the innovation of the rail system and wondered if we were forgetting about rail freight....

In the latest plenary session on the closing day of the conference, “Innovation in Transport – the way to go”, Robert Skinner, Executive President of the Transport Research Board, the US institution in charge of transport research, pointed out the common wish for both the United States and the European Union to further develop in the coming months their exchanges to find common solutions to support a global sustainable mobility for all. In addition, the invited representative from the STIF (institution in charge of the organisation and regulation of public transports in the Paris region) stressed the main importance for transport researchers in supporting transport operators and public authorities in finding the adequate solutions to a smarter mobility today involving all the necessary stakeholders as transportation can no longer be limited to an isolated challenge from the rest of all economical, social and cultural activities. He concluded his intervention stressing the importance for Europe to invest in the transportation domain as it remains a sector where Europe is competitive and can bring its expertise to the rest of the world.

A more detailed presentation of some of the sessions (plenary/strategic/scientific & technical) addressed during the TRA 2014 will be made available on the UIC extranet.

Presentations made by UIC Senior Advisors on the UIC Stand are available here:

  • SUSTRAIL General Presentation:

  • UIC Security EU projects:

  • CHALLENGE 2050:


The 6th TRA will be organised in spring 2016 in Warsaw, Poland.

For more information please contact François Maugère, UIC Innovation Advisor: and Dennis Schut, UIC Research Manager:

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WCRR 2016 ORG/EXE Committees Meeting (Paris, 15 – 16 April 2014)

Closely linked to the planning of the 5th TRA (Transport Research Arena) and the IRRB Plenary Meeting, the WCRR (World Congress on Railway Research) EXE and ORG meetings were held in conjunction.

These meetings marked the first meetings since the successful WCRR 2013 which was held in Sydney. The meetings – with a somewhat similar agenda – concentrated on the report of the WCRR 2013 event and the start of the preparation for the 2016 WCRR which will be held in Milan, Italy.

The welcome address was delivered by Italian EXE chairman Stefano Guidi, who then introduced the IOC – Italian Organising Committee. Since Italy will host the 11th WCRR, a specific team has been constituted to organise the congress. To this end Trenitalia and its holding company Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane are combining their specific skills and efforts to face this challenge. The Trenitalia team will mainly manage the scientific and technical areas while Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane will concentrate on the organisational and communications aspects of the event. The EXE Committee agreed with this set-up and agreed to work closely with the IOC and recommended that the ORG Committee endorse this.
Following the detailed report on the WCRR 2013 by Kevin Taylor, the WCRR ORG chairman for this event, the report and its recommendations were approved. Furthermore, it was supported that UNIFE – as was the case in the organising of the 2011 WCRR in Lille – agreed to be part of the organisation of WCRR 2016. They were already represented during these first WCRR 2016 EXE & ORG meetings.

In order to make WCRR 2016 more attractive, members proposed to combine the following additional events:

  • UIC European regional assembly;
  • UIC General assembly;
  • International Rail Research Board (IRRB).

The EXE recommended the ORG Committee to update/confirm UIC details for additional events.

The venue proposal made by the IOC – the FIERA Milano – was endorsed by the EXE Committee as well as by the ORG. It is one of the biggest and best exhibition and congress centres in Italy and ideally located near the railway station, so that rolling stock could easily be made part of the WCRR exhibition.

Furthermore, drafts for the WCRR 2013 logo and theme were discussed as well as the format and sessions themes. Proposals as discussed will be sent out to the EXE and ORG members for their remarks.

A proposal for a work plan and timeline were also presented and discussed as well as possible meeting dates, the first being 18 September 2014 in Rome, Italy for the second EXE meeting.

The ORG meeting on 16 April followed more or less the same agenda as the EXE and the EXE proposals were endorsed. During the ORG meeting three professional congress organisers had been invited to present their capabilities to support the IOC. The selection will be made within three weeks.

The Best Paper Award procedures were discussed again together with the experiences in Sydney. It was decided to use an Italian team of experts to evaluate the submitted papers. It was found that a national team of experts would be easier to manage and easier to communicate with.

Finally, a presentation was made by Mr Fuminao OKUMURA, Executive Director of RTRI, the Japanese Rail Research Institute, proposing to organise and host the 12th WCRR in Tokyo city centre in the autumn of 2019 – 20 years after they organised the 4th WCRR. The proposal was welcomed and gladly accepted. The fact that Japan was always strongly supportive of railway research and innovation was highly appreciated.

On the evening between the EXE and ORG meeting days ORG member Jean-Pierre Loubinoux invited the WCRR and IOC organising members to an informal team building cocktail reception.

The meetings were felt by all as a very positive start in the preparation of the next World Congress on Railway Research.

For further information please contact Dennis Schut:

1 vote

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News from UIC members

France: Second run of Europe’s longest train

Europe’s longest freight train completed a second phase of trials in mid-April, designed to validate the technical feasibility of a double train ahead of a possible commercial launch. These trials were conducted by Fret SNCF and RFF between Sibelin yard near Lyon and Nîmes. Two 750-metre long consists were joined together at Sibelin marshalling yard (Rhône) to form a 4000-tonne 1500m-long train hauled by two locomotives. Technically, the innovation focuses on a radio control system which makes it possible to link the head locomotive manned by a driver with the driverless locomotive situated in the middle of the train. A double train such as this can transport up to 70 wagons compared to 35 wagons carried by a conventional 750-metre long train.

This second test operation took place with existing rolling stock: two Euro 4000 diesel locomotives built by Vossloh. On 18 January, two Alstom Class BB 37000 electric locomotives were tested. The test train consisted of an 820-metre long train (two 410-metre trains joined together) coupled to the back of a second locomotive (known as a slave locomotive) and hauling another 620-metre train. The trial run was the result of two years of preparation and static testing.

(Source: SNCF)

4 Votes

Average rating: 4.5 / 5

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Editorial team: UIC e-News Team, Paris 22 April 2014

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