Lawmakers yesterday passed proposed amendments to the Railway Act (鐵路法), including a provision that railway staff should be equipped with safety training and disease prevention skills.
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Lee Kun-tse (李昆澤), who drafted the provision, said that the change is to tackle recurring incidents involving free riders harming railway police and conductors, as well as to improve staff preparedness against COVID-19 and seasonal flu.
Apart from being tasked with disease prevention and safety response capabilities, railway staff should familiarize themselves with disease prevention or safety equipment used by rail operators, the amendment says.
Photo: Peter Lo, Taipei Times
Rail operators must keep train operation, monitoring and maintenance logs, and retain them for a prescribed period, which is to be defined by the Ministry of Transportation and Communications, another amendment says.
Railway staff must comply with accident investigations by the Taiwan Transportation Safety Board, they say.
As the board was launched in July last year, the amendment is to require rail operators to abide by the Transportation Occurrence Investigation Act (運輸事故調查法) and cooperate with probes launched by the board, said DPP Legislator Lin Chun-hsien (林俊憲), a sponsor of the amendments.
The legislature also passed an article stipulating that products used on rail systems must be certified by institutes recognized by the ministry.
The ministry may accept reports or certification issued based on tests conducted in accordance with international conventions and protocols, or agreements signed between the government and other nations, the article says.
Independent Legislator Chao Cheng-yu (趙正宇), who drafted the proposal, said that it would help improve domestic key technologies used in rail construction, bring about a industrial upgrade and synchronize Taiwanese firms with the international community of industries.
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