Office of the Auditor General of Norway

Maintenance efficiency in the rail network Read full text in English

2016 report 3:10 (2015–2016)

The primary objective of railway politics is to contribute to ensure that users of the transport service have good railway options. The Norwegian National Rail Administration is organised under the Ministry of Transport and Communications, and its responsibilities include operation, maintenance and development of the State's railway infrastructure. The maintenance activities must safeguard safety, fixed assets and operational stability of the railway system. The most important objective for the maintenance is to reduce the scope of operational interruptions, and to facilitate better punctuality and regularity in rail traffic. The Storting has been informed on multiple occasions that there is a maintenance backlog in the Norwegian railway infrastructure.
The objective of the investigation has been to evaluate whether the maintenance tasks that fall under the Norwegian National Rail Administration are carried out efficiently, and in such a way that safeguards practical and accessible transportation. The investigation covers the period from 2006–2015.

In the report page 1-2

- The Norwegian National Rail Administration's management has not put the necessary management tools into place

- It is the opinion of the Office of the Auditor General that the Norwegian National Rail Administration's control and management systems do not provide the necessary information to ensure achievement of the efficient resource use goals.

- The Norwegian National Rail Administration does not have comprehensive documentation of the overall condition of the railways

- Local knowledge of the condition of the rails is good, but failure to record data in the railway databank 'BaneData' undermines general management and control.

- The Ministry has little information on whether or not appropriations are applied effectively In the opinion of the Office of the Auditor General, the Ministry has not stipulated performance targets that yield sufficient information to determine whether maintenance appropriations are used effectively.

In the report page 2

- The Norwegian National Rail Administration does not have a system for measuring maintenance productivity Information about resource commitment (costs) and production (completed maintenance) is needed in order to measure productivity. The Norwegian National Rail Administration lacks precise information about total completed maintenance.

- Necessary measures to improve maintenance management information have not beenprioritised It is the assessment of the Office of the Auditor General that the management of the Norwegian National Rail Administration has notprioritised the necessary actions to ensure improvement. They have not established a sufficiently sound culture of improvement in the organisation – and the Ministry's followup is deficient.

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