From 1 January 2021, a new domestic railway technical standards regime will replace the EU’s Technical Specifications for Interoperability (TSIs).  Regulations have been made and laid in Parliament (S.I. 2019/345) by the Department for Transport (DfT) to come into effect from 1 January 2021, which will enable a new system of UK National Technical Specification Notices (NTSNs) that will replace TSIs, but preserve their technical content.  The Department for Transport has been working closely with RSSB to create the new system of UK National Technical Specification Notices (NTSNs) that will replace TSIs. These NTSNs will be published by the Secretary of State and become law from 1 January 2021.

The approach to converting TSIs into a domestic system of NTSNs has been to preserve, where appropriate, the same rights and obligations in force at the end of the transition period.  The technical requirements in force at that time also remain the same.  However, given that the NTSNs will only apply to the UK, it has been necessary to amend the content as some provisions would be deficient as the UK would no longer a member of the EU (also known as ‘inoperabilities’).  For example, references to ‘Member States’ or EU institutions.

The DfT is seeking stakeholders’ views on the changes made to address these inoperabilities and is not seeking views on the technical requirements. This exercise does not concern future TSIs and the proposed NTSN Change Management Process can be accessed below.

Please note that this is the second phase of industry feedback following the publication of the first draft NTSNs before March 2019. The draft NTSNs published here now reflect the June 2019 TSI changes as well as any changes due to industry feedback. The first draft NTSNs have now been withdrawn to ensure that only the most up to date NTSNs are reviewed. Track change and clean versions of the issued NTSNs can be accessed below.

A draft DfT guidance document sets out the general approach being taken to resolve the inoperabilities that exist in the TSIs as a result of the UK no longer being a member of the EU. There is an additional guidance document which sets out how the NTSNs have been updated to reflect the June 2019 TSI changes.  These can also be accessed below.

If you have any comments on the content of these NTSNs please email: