ensuring railways are

safe, secure

and on track


The Research and Technical Services department is the powerhouse of knowledge and research in the RSR. The department has four arms; Research, Rolling Stock, Infrastructure and Environment, and Technology and Technical Standards.
  • We conduct rolling stock, infrastructure and environment technical studies to assess the areas that need improvement in our South African railway system and to identify solutions to these challenges.
  • The department produces the State of Safety report through which parliament, railway operators and the general public are informed of the safety performance of operators.
  • Our highly experienced rolling stock, infrastructure and environment experts offer technical support and advise internally and externally on rolling stock, infrastructure and environmental issues.
  • We monitor the movement of dangerous goods by rail.
  • We support the harmonisation of relevant standards in the SADC region by providing the relevant expertise.
  • We advice on safety aspects and provide authorisation for projects that have an impact on rail safety.
  • We conduct technical awareness sessions on railway safety standards.
  • We conduct research on railway safety related matters.
Occurrence Investigations department conducts investigations on occurrences in railways. The objectives of conducting these investigations is to determine the facts of the occurrences, determine the immediate and root causes and make recommendations to prevent or reduce the risk of recurrence. The department comprises three units.
  • Occurrence Investigations Unit which conducts investigations on occurrences.
  • Board of Inquiry, which is chaired by an independent lawyer, may comprise of industry experts and is facilitated and coordinated by the RSR team.
The department, which comprises Finance and Supply Chain Management, provides financial management leadership and endorses all financial information submitted to EXCO, Accounting Officer and the Accounting Authority. It maintains a Supply Chain Management System that is effective, efficient, transparent, competitive and fair. The department also ensures that the RSR complies with external regulatory requirements (that is, King III, Public Finance Management Act, Treasury Regulations, GRAP and any other relevant prescripts. It is responsible for ensuring that financial policies and guidelines are complied with and that the quality and timelines of financial information and reporting are assured. In addition, it develops and maintains an effective and efficient budget planning and monitoring system, which will not only ensure compliance with government budget cycle, but also ensure qualitative improvement in how the RSR does business making use of the SCM policy as a base.
The role of the Operations department is to monitor and enforce safety compliance in the rail sector by issuing safety permits and proactively conducting inspections and audits. The department comprises;
  • Three regional offices, which monitor and enforce safety compliance in the regions by issuing permits and proactively conducting inspections and audits.
  • Safety Permits, which is responsible for the administration and management of safety permits.
  • Security Management which is in charge of security related matters in railway operations.
  • Certification of Safety Critical Grades
The Media and Communications department provides a comprehensive communications service to the RSR. It is responsible for developing and delivering clear and compelling communications messages and materials to key audiences, internally and externally. It drives the strategic management of the RSR’s reputation and builds a profile between the RSR, the media and the public.
The Regulation and Governance department (REGO) provides legal advice and guidance to the Railway Safety Regulator. The department ensures that the overall strategic vision and goals of the organisation remain within the confines of all relevant laws. The mandate of REGO can be summarised as follows:
  • Creating a regulatory environment that is in accordance with the applicable and relevant legislation;
  • Managing a comprehensive, relevant, innovative and pro-active in-house legal service;
  • Ensuring that REGO achieves its performance targets so that it complements and enhances the performance of the organisation;
  • Guarding the reputation of the organisation by ensuring that the organisation is not exposed to legal risks;
  • Taking the responsibility for providing managers and front-line staff with sufficient legal knowledge so that they are able to act in the interest of the organisation at all times.