Safety of Railway Control Systems: A New Preliminary Risk Analysis Approach

Safety of Railway Control Systems: A New Preliminary Risk Analysis Approach

F. Guenab J.L. Boulanger W. Schön 

Heudiasyc Laboratory UMR CNRS 6599, Technology University of Compiegne, B.P. 20529, F-60205, Compiègne, France

31 March 2013
| Citation



Preliminary risk analysis (PRA) is a methodology used in critical systems safety studies. It is primarily used at the preliminary stage of the system’s design so as to determine the scenarios of potential acci-dents, to evaluate their probabilities of occurrence (frequency) as well as the severity of the resulting consequences and to propose solutions (preventive and/or mitigative safeguards) in order to reduce the risk level in terms of severity/occurrence (to reduce the frequency of the contributors or reduce the severity of the accident). The PRA was largely used in several industrial fields (aeronautics, weapons systems, chemistry, railways etc.) in order to study the safety of the systems. From one field to another, from one expert to another, many extremely different approaches and methods are used to carry out this analysis. Moreover, the formats representing the results of the PRA are often varied as well as the terminology and the concepts related to the PRA.

The main goal of this paper, completed within the framework of the ANR-PREDIT-SECUGUIDE project (project financed by the National Agency for Research – France. It aims to study the impact of introducing the New Information and Communication Technologies (NICT) into railway systems safety) is to propose a PRA method and to determine standard contents of PRA to be used in the context of the railway control systems by taking into account the impact of NICT.


automatic train control, feared events, new information and communication technologies (NICT), preliminary risk analysis (PRA), potential accident, railway safety, risk


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