UIC publishes document on resilience of rail during COVID-19
The document explores how the rail sector fought against the impact of COVID-19 and how the industry can build ‘RAILsilience’ together.
Since the launch of the COVID-19 Task Force at the beginning of March 2020 by the International Union of Railways (UIC) – which combines 70 UIC member companies and 18 international organisations with relevant information and knowledge – preventive measures and procedures adapted to the railway sector have been exchanged to respond to the COVID-19 crisis.
In the spirit of sharing current practices, UIC members and partner organisations provided the task force with significant input, leading to the publication of the first UIC document on the management of COVID-19 – providing guidance for railway stakeholders in implementing potential measures – on 13 March 2020.
A second guidance document was then published on 28 April 2020, which looks beyond the crisis and focuses on potential measures to restore confidence in rail travel following the COVID-19 pandemic.
The most recent publication – the third guidance document – focuses on how the rail sector fought against the impact of COVID-19 during national lockdowns. The main themes of the report focus on: the UIC COVID-19 Task Force; how to build ‘RAILsilience’ together; COVID-19 and the rail sector; and the response and mitigation measures put in place by the industry to stop the spread of the virus.
Whilst the outbreak of COVID-19 has created an unprecedented situation that is continuing to impact people across the globe, the rail sector immediately mobilised and went straight to work, together, sharing and exchanging on best practices to adopt.
In doing so, the railways have revealed their ability to resist, absorb, accommodate and recover from the effects of this pandemic in a timely, coordinated and efficient manner, for the preservation and restoration of essential rail passenger transport and freight services. This held especially true during the widespread government-imposed lockdowns, as this document demonstrates. The rail sector has already demonstrated its resilience in the face of COVID-19 and will continue to do so in the future.
A fourth guidance document is currently being prepared by UIC, which focuses on the recovery period and the various measures being taken by the railways post-confinement.