On 14 October, PKP Polskie Linie Kolejowe S.A, in cooperation with the UIC Security Division, organised a dedicated workshop in Warsaw on modern technology in the security system on railways.
The official opening and introduction to the workshop was given by Mr Dariusz Bielas, Director-Plenipotentiary of the Management Board of PKP PLK S.A. and Mr Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, Director General of UIC.
Recent and past critical events in the railway property, involving life losses and other important damages to the rail infrastructures and operations, lead the railway operating community to be pro-active and ready to answer to the constant evolution of the threats.
Increased awareness, exchange of experience and sharing information are within the objectives of the UIC Security Division that are achieved by promoting and collaborating with its members on the organisation of this type of workshop to form a better understanding of the threats and methods to anticipate and fight them.
Within that scope and in line with the decision of the last UIC European Management Committee (EMC) coordination, Mr Jean-Pierre Loubinoux informed the meeting that the UIC Security Division is preparing an 18 month rail security activities programme that should be in place from January 2016. Those activities will cover a comprehensive range of topics addressing key areas to enhance the resilience levels of rail security protection.
Those topics will focus on the interoperability and exchange of security-related information for international trains, training and communication for railway staff, and benchmarking on railway crisis management.
The workshop was enriched by the exchange of presentations of PKP PLK S.A. The Railway Security Guard (SOK) explained the organisation of SOK, stressing its cooperation with other entities responsible for the security system and also demonstrated the capabilities of the SOK’s Operation-Intervention Groups. In addition, PKP PLK S.A. gave a presentation on how rail infrastructure protection is using innovative solutions by running pilot projects for technical measures, including prevention of catenary theft – (PKP PLK S.A.)
The UIC Security Division presented the most recent findings, products and results from a number of research projects and technical actives, namely PROTECTRAIL White Paper (Key Lessons for the Railway Sector on rail Security Architecture), SECRET (study of the impacts of EM attacks on the rail infrastructure), CIPRNet (Critical Infrastructures Protection), BODEGA (Analysis of the human factors’ aspects of border control processes), and complemented with an generic approach to the Cyber Security (Building of a technical strategy).
Closing the workshop Professor Gerd Neubeck, Deutsche Bahn’s Chief Security Officer and Vice-Chairman of the UIC Security Platform, stressed the importance of such events that contribute to the exchange of good practice and strengthen cooperation between law enforcement and railways. When performed in respect and trust by work done both at national level and across borders, they have a significant positive impact on crime prevention in the daily operations of railways that result in better performance and less disruption for railway users.
Conscious of the complexity of rail security protection in a global and constant moving sector, experts must always have in mind that one size measure does not fit all and that good solutions needs to be found respecting different legal, cultural and even social frameworks.
Being aware of the constant threats evolutions, up to date on the wide range of preventive and reactive measures, and being well trained and ready to act when needed, is of paramount importance for railways today.
PKP PLK S.A. also provided the practical part of the workshop by presenting one of its Mobile Monitoring Centre vehicles.
UIC Security Platform Steering Committee
The UIC Security Platform Steering Committee convened after the closing of the workshop where current and ongoing platform matters were presented and discussed in the course of the schedule.
A summary activity report was presented by each UIC Security Platform WG, namely Mr Vladimir Kuznetsov from RZD, Chairman of the UIC Human Factors WG, Mrs Delphine Beatse from SNCB on behalf of Mr Hendrik Vanderkimpen Chairperson of the Strategy, Regulation and Procedures WG, Mrs Susanne Kufeld from DG AG Chairperson of the UIC Metal Theft WG and Mr Wlodzimierz Ternawski from PKP PLK S.A. on behalf of Mrs Edyta Jaszczuk, Chairperson of the Security-BIRC WG. Information on New Technologies WG was provided by Mr Jacques Colliard and Mrs Marie Hélène Bonneau (UIC Security Division).
Ms Alena Havlova from CER, provided a summary report on the recent EU developments with regard to the so-called “Thalys incident” on 21 August, following which a number of EC and EU meetings took place, in particular the EU Transport Council on 8 October where the discussion focused on how to improve the security of rail passengers in Europe. Commissioner Mr Bulc presented to the Transport Council members the outcome of the extraordinary meeting of the Commission’s Expert Group on Land Transport Security (LANDSEC) organised on 11 September. That meeting discussed the possibility of developing EU measures on terrorism and rail security; Member States agreed that the most appropriate approach should rely on risk and threat assessment, based on which the Member States need to take appropriate actions. It is important to seek rail-specific solutions, as aviation’s security approach is not possible for rail.
In the short term, the Commission is going to continue exchanging good practice and launch a study focusing on training for personnel, contingency planning and technical improvements. The outcome of this study should be ready in 2016.
Jacques Colliard also informed the steering committee that the last UIC European Management Committee held in Oslo addressed security topics at European level and asked UIC to develop a strategic security plan of activities for the future and to prepare a programme of activities on the following topics:
- Interoperability – and exchange – of security related information for international trains
- Training and communication: security staff, general staff, involvement of passengers in their own security
- Benchmarking on crisis management
- Problem of refugees vis-à-vis railway sector
The final work of the UIC Security Platform Steering Committee focused on the preparation for the 11th Security Congress organised in India from 8 – 10 December 2015 under the theme “Security at the service of rail business activities”, in coordination with Indian Railways, currently chair of the UIC Security Platform.
Professor Gerd Neubeck, Deutsche Bahn, expressed his thanks for the organisation of both workshop and Steering Committee meetings, pointed out the tangible results and pro-activeness of the platform’s work.
The closing statements where provided by Mr Jerzy Wisniewski Head of the UIC Fundamental Values, that highlight the value of these events that bring together people, expertise enhancing the trust needed to overcome all those daily difficulties. He concluded by saying that as a local it was a particular pleasure to welcome everyone to Warsaw, and was looking forward to promote more successful initiatives.
All the presentations are available in the dedicated security workspace of the UIC extranet system at http://extranet.uic.org/