Russian Railways signs up to international agreement on creation of UNIFE consortium for quality standardisation
An international agreement has been signed on the creation of a consortium of UNIFE (the Union des Industries Ferroviaires Européennes, the Association of the European Rail Industry) to develop voluntary certification and quality management systems based on the application of the sectoral quality management standard in the railway sector ISO/TS 22163 (IRIS).
The agreement was signed on 18 September 2018 within the framework of the InnoTrans 2018 international exhibition of transport equipment and logistics.
Representatives of 19 railway infrastructure owners and manufacturers of rolling stock and equipment put their signatures to the contract, including Deutsche Bahn AG, Société nationale des chemins de fer français (SNCF, the French National Railway Company), Swiss Federal Railways (SBB-CFF-FFS), Société nationale des chemins de fer belges (SNCB, the National Railway Company of Belgium), Siemens AG, Alstom Transport SA and Bombardier Transportation GmbH.
The agreement contract was also signed by the Company’s Deputy Managing Director and Chief Engineer Sergey Kobzev on behalf of OJSC Russian Railways.
Participation in the consortium will enable the Company to represent its interests on the management body of the international rail industry standard for quality management systems, monitor the quality of certification work and the training of auditors and, together with European infrastructure owners and railway operators, to formulate a unified policy on harmonised requirements for suppliers and build a system for the development of the quality of the supply chain in the railway industry, both at the level of national suppliers and, on the international level. It will also facilitate an expansion in the scope of certification with regard to the ongoing maintenance of rolling stock.
Since 2007, Russian Railways has been working with the Association of the European Rail Industry (UNIFE) on the development of voluntary certification systems, the harmonisation of technical regulation and training and improving the qualifications of employees at Russian transport engineering enterprises.
Russian Railways has been coordinating the introduction of the IRIS standard at Russian transport engineering enterprises since 2010.
The standard has confirmed its effectiveness. The implementation and maintenance of quality management systems (business) at enterprises in accordance with the requirements of the IRIS standard were the main factors in improving product quality and reducing equipment failures.
In 2017, the International Railway Industry Standard (IRIS) standard received the status of an international industry standard International Organization for Standardisation (ISO).
As a result, the railway sector has developed its own industry standard ISO/TS 22163 – "Railway applications – Quality management system – Business Management System Requirements for Rail Organisations: ISO 9001:2015 and Particular Requirements for Application in the Rail Sector."
At present, 94% of the 116 certified IRIS enterprises in Russia have met the requirements of this standard.