Digital railways and green freight services - TSI revision package 2022


The European Commission has begun the procedure to introduce changes to Technical Specifications of Interoperability (TSI). Until mid-2022 the European Union Agency for Railways (EUAR) will be preparing the proposals of the updates to TSIs. The new TSIs will determine the future of railways in Europe. That's why it is important to include the opinion of the Polish railway market. The Office of Rail Transport encourages the entrepreneurs to nominate their representatives who will provide opinions on the new TSIs.

State entities responsible for railway safety as well as representative bodies will participate in the proceedings conducted by the EUAR. The Office of Rail Transport (Pol. Urząd Transportu Kolejowego, UTK) intends to represent the Polish market participants in these proceedings, coordinate their opinions and disseminated information on the approaching entry dates of the new TSIs. - I encourage all railway market participants to get themselves interested in the coming TSI revisions. Taking into account the importance of the coming changes it is essential to ensure that the position of the Polish railway industry is properly introduced during these proceedings on the European level - says Mr. Ignacy Góra, Ph.D., the President of UTK. - Active participation in the revision and introduction of the new TSIs will also allow for better preparation for the application of the new specifications, which will become legally binding - he adds.

Planned revision foresees the development of digital railways (onboard signalling, automatic train driving or 5G communication technology) as well as intention to get rid of barriers in railway freight services and use of environment-friendly technologies. 

The new package is the second phase of execution of guidelines stemming from the Commission Delegated Decision (EU) 2017/1474 of 8 June 2017. The first phase was dedicated to the implementation of the 4th Railway Package and concentrated mostly on certification and authorisation. The second phase will allow for introduction of requirements with regard to new technologies, especially related to the program of digitalisation of European railways. An essential part of the revision scheme remains the ERTMS system development, including the preparation of ERTMS level 3 specifications, preparation of conditions of implementation of Automatic Train Operation systems in the first phase of GoA 1/2 level and its integration with ERTMS, introduction of the new digital communication system FRMCS (based on 4/5G technology) so that until 2030 there are conditions for the GSM-R migration to the new system. There are also plans to introduce the system of rolling stock positioning based on the European Galileo satellite system, also planned as technical support for the ERTMS 3 system. The cyber-security standards in the railway sector will also be prepared. Aside from that there will a new specification introduced with regards to telemetric applications intended to replace the current ones, existing separately for passenger and freight transport services.

The goal of the second group of TSI revision procedures - Green Freight Transport Services - is to create conditions allowing for the execution by the railway sector of tasks inscribed in the European Green Deal. These tasks aim at the development of the freight railway services, which will be measured by their market share increase. New changes in regulation practices should allow for removal of the barriers blocking freight transfer development and adoption of requirements intented to limit their influence on environment. Intermodal transfers will be assigned a significant role in that process. EUAR has prepared a report on "Facilitation of combined transport services", which contains guidelines on their development. At the same time the Council Directive 92/106/EEC of 7 December 1992 on the establishment of common rules for certain types of combined transport of goods between Member States. TSIs for freight wagons will also be amended and there will be requirements introduced for loading units. New technologies will also be part of these proceedings, especially with regard to interoperational requirements for automatic coupling in freight wagons (among those digital train data transmission) and regulations enabling the use of Automatic Identification and Data Collection technology so that physical labelling of freight wagons may cease to be used.

New TSIs will also facilitate the use of environment-friendly technologies, like rolling stock with new drives (hydrogen fuel cells, batteries and other potential sources) or methods to rationalise the use of energy. A review of the noise emission level will also be conducted for all types of rolling stock, also in connection with the improvement of energy efficiency of the rolling stock in "stop-over" mode.

Invitation to consultations

We invite the entrepreneurs interested in the TSI revision to contact UTK at in order to pass on information on their representatives who should remain their contact points with UTK. These persons will then receive information on the state of proceedings and will be asked to present their opinions on the proposals discussed during the sessions of European Union working groups.

go up