Safe by Design Groups / Health and Safety by Design groups

What is Safe by Design/Health and Safety by Design?

Irrespective of where and what we design, Safety (including Health and Sustainability) is an integral part of the design process. We need to understand what influences safe design and then adapt our processes – and more importantly our behaviours – to make it instinctive. Design must consider safety over the whole project lifecycle, from inception, to development, implementation, commissioning, operation and maintenance, and eventual decommissioning and disposal.  The Safe by Design (SbD) initiative is a rail projects led response to these challenges.

Safe by Design principles actively eliminate or reduce risk during design development for construction and maintenance activities and ensures that remaining risks are effectively communicated.

Please note that Safe by Design (SbD)  has started a journey towards being renamed to Health and Safety by Design (HSbD) to align with ORR Strategic Chapter 12 – Health and Safety by Design ( ). The SbD Buildings and Civils Working Group is the first to change as part of a wider programme of change which is work in progress

How are the ‘Safe by Design Groups’ structured?

The SbD Groups has been created to as a means for Network Rail and wider stakeholder to come together to solve industry problems in this area. It is primarily driven by the following engineering discipline Working Groups:

  • Buildings and Civils Working Group
  • Electrification and Plant Working Group
  • Signalling Working Group
  • Track Working Group

These are supported by the Safe by Design Steering Group which reports to the Prevention Through Engineering and Design (PtED) Steering Group; who sponsors the initiative.

Collaboration Site

The Network Rail Collaboration Site now includes an area dedicated to Safe by Design. It provides a platform for sharing ‘SbD’ information and best practices and is intended to help facilitate an industry conversation aimed at improving Safety by Design.

Please note the SbD collaboration site is unavailable at this time due to ongoing IT upgrades and we will advise when the new platform is ready.

You will need to register in order to access the Collaboration Site. This tool is web-based and freely accessible to Network Rail employees (via IT Helpdesk on Connect) and our supply chain. Our suppliers can request access by sending an email to:

Note: Suppliers that already have access to Network Rail’s Standard Design Catalogue Collaboration Site will automatically be given access to the Safe by Design area.

You can access the Collaboration Site  HERE 

Insert link ‘Guidance on how to upload content to the Safe by Design Collaboration Site’

Insert link ‘SbD Collaboration Site Template Apr 2014’

How to get in touch:

If you have any queries regarding the content of this page or if you want to get in touch with the Safe by Design Steering Group please email

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