OTSI conducts investigations, undertakes data analysis and research, and engages with stakeholders to share insights on risks to support safety improvements.
The role of OTSI is to improve safety and enhance public confidence in the safety of the NSW transport network through:
independent investigation of transport incidents and accidents
identifying system-wide safety issues and their contributing factors
sharing safety lessons and making recommendations or highlighting actions that transport operators, regulators and other stakeholders can take to improve the safety of bus, ferry and rail passenger and rail freight services.
OTSI investigates safety incident and accidents in NSW involving:
buses seating more than 8 adults and operating a public passenger service for a fare
ferries (vessels) seating more than 8 adults and operating a public passenger service for a fare
railway operations such as the construction of a railway and rolling stock; the management, commissioning and maintenance of rail infrastructure; and the operation or movement of rolling stock for the purposes of operating a railway service.
OTSI uses a ‘no-blame’ approach to investigation to identify and understand contributing safety factors and underlying issues. We may make recommendations and share safety insights and lessons with transport operators, regulators, government, and other stakeholders such as manufacturers or suppliers so they can take action to improve safety.
In addition to undertaking our own investigations, we review investigation reports prepared by transport authorities and other transport operators.
An essential part of independent, no-blame investigation are the arrangements that support the sharing of information between parties involved in investigations and OTSI. This includes the protection from self-incrimination of individuals who share information with OTSI, the protection from disclosure of information OTSI obtains as part of its investigations unless there is an overriding public interest to do so and that evidence obtained by OTSI in the conduct of its work cannot be used in any subsequent criminal or civil proceedings against an individual or company.
To complement investigation of incidents and accidents, OTSI uses data together with other information to identify safety insights to share with the transport sector or potential safety issues that may be better addressed through systemic and programmed investigations or research.
What happens with a completed OTSI investigation?
Once completed, the results of investigations are documented in a final report that includes an overview of the matter under investigation, analysis, findings and safety issues, recommendations or actions to improve safety. Investigation reports are published on the OTSI website and shared with relevant stakeholders.
Confidential Safety Information Reporting Scheme (CSIRS)
OTSI manages the CSIRS to enable transport employees to report matters which they believe are affecting the safe operation of bus, ferry or rail passenger and freight services.
CSIRS reports may include safety concerns relating to Safety Management Systems, or significant safety matters that transport employees have been unable to resolve internally, or they feel may warrant additional investigation and/or review by OTSI.
The scheme is confidential, enabling employees to report without fear of retribution.
If you are a transport employee, you can access the CSIRS in two ways:
call 1800 180 828 between 8.30am and 5.00pm (Monday to Friday)
OTSI promotes improvements in transport safety through ongoing engagement and the sharing of safety lessons with key stakeholders involved in bus, ferry and rail passenger and rail freight services including:
transport operators and service providers, manufacturers, and suppliers