Lloyd’s Register appointed as independent safety assessor for the new extension of Taiwan high-speed rail network

Classification Societies, Events, Safety and Security — By on December 4, 2012 at 4:55 PM

Lloyd’s Register CEO Richard Sadler (left) presents the THSRC Chairman and CEO, Ou Chin-der, with a gift to commemorate the occasion

Contract continues organisation’s role as the third-party assessor for the island’s state-of-the-art railway    

The Taiwan High Speed Railway Corporation (THSRC) has chosen Lloyd’s Register as the independent safety assessor (ISA) for the Nangang extension of its network.

THSRC Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Ou Chin-der, met with Lloyd’s Register’s CEO Richard Sadler in London this week to personally sign the contract during a special ceremony at the organisation’s historic offices on Fenchurch Street.   “We are pleased to continue this successful relationship with Lloyd’s Register, which began in 2000 when our railway was the first project in Taiwan to undergo an independent verification and validation process, ” Dr. Ou said. “I believe that independent assessment is the key to the overall success of a project. It is the only way to ensure that safety standards are maintained throughout the construction and operation of a system.”   “In six years of operation, we have a perfect safety record, ” he said. “Next month we expect our 200-millionth passenger and we look forward to adding these new destinations to our network and ensuring that our system continues to grow.”   Taiwan’s high-speed railway follows a 345km north-south route along the west coast of the island, stretching from the capital, Taipei, to the southern port city of Kaohsiung. Its opening in January 2007 reduced journey times between these two key economic centres to about 90 minutes from four hours, with services also connecting eight other stations along the line.

THSRC has now begun work to extend the network, starting with the construction of three new stations in the counties of Miaoli, Changhua and Yunlin along the original route, and a 4km underground extension to Taipei’s Nangang District.   “We are proud of our long relationship with the Taiwan High Speed Railway. The original seven-year project remains one of the largest we have ever worked on, bringing us wider recognition within Taiwan’s business community, ” Richard Sadler, CEO, Lloyd’s Register Group said “These new stations are a testament to the success that the railway has become and we look forward to working with Dr Ou and his team to open the network to more communities along the island’s west coast.”   The new terminus at Nangang will help to ease passenger congestion at Taipei Railway Station and provide a new interchange with Taiwan’s conventional passenger railway and Taipei’s underground system. The project is expected to take around three years.   Lloyd’s Register’s remit is to provide independent safety-assessment services for the construction of the new stations, as well as for the works associated with the Nangang extension.

During the course of the project, the scope of the assessments will include the traction-power system, track work, signalling, automatic fare collection, the new station control room at Nangang and the civil engineering work at the three new stations.   Between 2000 and 2007, Lloyd’s Register provided the independent verification and validation work for the construction of the original high-speed network, including the first international use of Japanese Shinkansen technology.   Despite low patronage during initial operations, ridership across the network has risen steadily in the past three years, with daily passenger numbers now more than twice those reported during its first year of service.

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Lloyd’s Register provides independent assurance to companies operating high-risk, capital-intensive assets in the energy and transportation sectors. We enhance the safety of life, property and the environment by helping our clients to ensure the quality construction and operation of critical infrastructure.   Taiwan’s high-speed railway opened in January 2007. It provides bullet trains operating at speeds of up to 300km/h along its 345km route. Around 251 km (or 73%) of the line runs on viaducts and 18% is in tunnels, as the network extends through a mix of mountainous and jungle terrain that is subject to frequent earthquakes and summer typhoons. It was the first privately funded infrastructure project in Taiwan. Lloyd’s Register led the team that not only provided the first independent verification and validation of a railway in Taiwan, but also the first international assessment of the Japanese technology.

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