Authorisation of rail vehicles

When you plan to put a new, upgraded, renewed or imported railway vehicle into service you have to send an application via ERA One-Stop-Shop. If you want to test a new, modified or inported railway vehicle on Swedish tracks, you have to apply for an authorisation for tests to the Swedish Transport Agency. Applications for authorisation of trams and metros shall be sent to Swedish Transport Agency, as well as applications forvehicles for Saltsjöbanan and Roslagsbanan, for historical railway lines, for privately owned infrastructure used by its owner or by an operator for the purpose of their respective freight activities and vehicles reserved for a strictly local, historical or touristic use. 

Transitional rule on using independent reviewers

According to the transition rule to the Railway Technology Act (2022:366), older regulations may be applied to cases and matters initiated before the Act enters into force. This means that if you have an ongoing case before 1 June 2022 for authorisation in the One-Stop Shop or for temporary authorisation or for an independent reviewer at the Swedish Transport Agency, you may continue to use an independent reviewer instead of a Designated Body (DeBo) in the authorisation process for the vehicle in question.

Application for authorisation of railway vehicles

Authorisations of railway vehicles and types of railway vehicles will be according to the process in the commission regulation "Practical arrangements for vehicle authorisation" (EU 2018/545) under related information. In this process the applicant e.g. manufacturer takes the responsibility for that the vehicle fulfills EU and additional national requirements. The applicant shall engage assessing bodies who certifies that the vehicle fulfills requirements according to interoperability directive, TSIs and additional national requirements and other relevant EU directives.

The applicant shall send the application to ERA database One-Stop-Shop. It is advisable to send the application early in the project of a new type of railway vehicle and apply for pre-engagement. The applicant shall attach information on the new vehicle type and the intended area of use (e.g. Sweden and Norway). If the vehicle type shall be authorised for operation only in Sweden you can ask Swedish Transport Agency to be the authorising entity. We accept applications in Swedish or English. For less extensive documents Danish or Norwegian is acceptable.

The applicant shall make a requirements capture in the first phase of the project. When the applicant and the authorising entity agrees on the requirements including additional national requirements, the authorisning entity will make a pre-engagement baseline document.

During the design, manufacturing and test phases the applicant has to engage notified bodies (Nobo), designated national bodies (Debo) and assessment bodies for CSM Risk assessment (Asbo). These assessment bodies shall certify that the vehicle type incl. variants fulfills TSIs, NTRs, safe integration between subsystems within the vehicle and safe integration with the trackside subsystems. When the applicant has all relevant certificates he shall make an EG-declaration of verification for each subsystem on the vehicle type and send the formal application to the One-Stop-Shop. If the vehicle shall be tested on Swedish tracks, you have to apply for a test authorisation at Swedish Transport Agency. In most authorisation cases of new types of vehicles there are necessary to make tests on track during the assessment phase of a project.

The applicant shall submit all necessary documents and send the application with an EG-declaration of verification, assessment certificates and their technical files to ERAs One-Stop-Shop. In the declarations of verification, the applicant shall declare that the vehicle type fulfills all applicable rules for authorisation.

When ERA has the formal application they will make an authorisation for placing on the market for the type of vehicle. In the authorisation process ERA will work in close connection with the national authorities for the intended area of use. When ERA has assessed the documentation and got answers on their questions they will make an authorisation incl. variants, they may also set restrictions in the authorisation. ERA may also authorise a fleet of vehicles of the type provided that the certificates supports this.

Before you put a new vehicle into service, you have to check that it is authorised and registered in vehicle register. You also have to analyse the route compatibility for the routes where you intend to operate the vehicle.

Application for national authorisation of rail vehicles

(trams, metros, national vehicles and test operation)

The applicant for authorisation of a national vehicle shall send an application with data on the applicant and on the vehicle to Swedish Transport Agency. We accept applications in Swedish or English. For less extensive documents Danish or Norwegian is acceptable. The application should be sent as early as possible in the project for a new or modified vehicle, the application should not be complete. Swedish Transport Agency will then inform the applicant on the process and the technical requirements. National vehicles are trams, metros, historic vehicles, vehicles for Roslagsbanan and Saltsjöbanan historical infrastructure and vehicles reserved for a strictly local, historical or touristic use. Also new and modified TSI-vehicles needs a test authorisation if they are intended to be tested on Swedish tracks.

Link to the application forms: Application for authorisation of vehicles.

Send your application for authorisation to:

We prefer electronic documents. When we get an application will our designated expert contact you (the applicant) and inform you on the business case number. When there is a business case for a project you should send all complementary documents to our expert by e-mail, don't forget the business case number. The Swedish Transport Agency will send invoices to the applicant for authorisation work (the current fee is 1200 SEK/h).

By authorisation of new types of vehicles, we normally authorise both the type and all the vehicles in the first series. In the authorisation, we state the type designation and a vehicle ID-number. For railway vehicles, the ID-number is according the Commission decision on national vehicle register (2011/107/EU) and TSI Operation (2012/757/EU) appendix 6. See under related information.

In case of an upgrade or renewal of an authorised type of vehicle for the national railway system, the Swedish Transport Agency shall decide if a new authorisation is necessary and which functions that have to be assessed in the new authorisation. For TSI vehicles, the process for authorisation according to the "Practical arrangements for vehicle
authorisation" shall be applied. This means that Notified bodies shall assess that the modified functions fulfils TSI requirements (and other assessors for national requirements and safe integration). Only the modified functions will be assessed in case of upgrade or renewal.

National process for authorisation of rail vehicles

When the national process is applied for vehicle authorisation Swedish Transport Agency is assessing most of the documentation, but we may also ask for assessing by independent assessors for specific documents e.g. interaction vehicle – infrastructure. The on board Control-Command and signalling system shall also be assessed by an independent assessor.

The authorisation may also be done in different phases.

  • J1 Authorisation for passive transport in Sweden (e.g. vehicles coming directly from another country).
  • J2 Authorisation for test runs on closed tracks (e.g. test runs of vehicles with a new type of CCS- or brake system).
  • J4 Authorisation for tests in mixed traffic, where the tests may be done according to normal traffic regulations. (e.g. electrical tests of the traction of the vehicle).
  • J5 Authorisation of experience operation in commercial service (e.g. demonstration of the reliability of the vehicle in Nordic winter conditions).
  • J6 Permanent authorisation

Before start of experience operation, the vehicle has to be registered in the national vehicle register, se specific page. The national register shall contain data on the vehicle and data on entity in charge of maintenance (ECM) and the vehicle keeper. The name and address of owner may be set in the register.

Categories of rail vehicles

By the authorisation the Swedish Transport Agency will set the category of a vehicle. This may be: locomotive, multiple unit, passenger coach, high speed train, freight wagon, shunter, OTM, metro vehicle or tram. Normally the Swedish Transport Agency also designates the type code and vehicle number by the authorisation (e.g. multiple unit type X62 nr 94 744 620 010-9).

  • A multiple unit is a fixed formation of vehicles that can operate as a train designed for passenger traffic. (According to old TSIs also designed for operation on the conventional network).
  • A locomotive is a traction vehicle which is not designed for carrying payload and has the ability to be uncoupled from a train in normal operation.
  • A coach is a vehicle without traction designed for carrying passengers.
  • A wagon is a vehicle without traction designed for carrying freight.
  • An On Track Machine (OTM) is a vehicle designed for construction, maintenance or condition measuring of the infrastructure.
  • A shunter is a vehicle designed for operation only on stations and depots.
  • A suburban train is a fixed rack of passenger vehicles designed for operation on Saltsjöbanan or Roslagsbanan. These types of vehicles are authorised according to the national process.
  • A tram is a vehicles designed for passenger operation on tramways. These types of vehicles are authorised according to the national process.
  • A tram-train is a vehicle designed for both tram and railway
    operation. Tran-trains are authorised according to the national process.
  • A metro vehicle is designed for passenger operation on the metro lines. These types of vehicles are authorised according to the national process.

There are also a number of different versions of these categories, e.g. driving coaches and shunters. There are also a few derogations from the requirement of Swedish Transport Agencys authorisation e.g. vehicles with maximum speed of 20 km/h.

Normally an imported vehicle with a foreign authorisation needs an additional authorisation for operation in Sweden. To facilitate this Swedish Transport Agency applies cross acceptance of the authorisation. This means that we accept specific specifications and assessments of these specifications done at the first authorisation by another NSA. The process for cross acceptance according the new interoperability directive (2016/797) is applied for vehicles under the directive ande is described in the TSI´s.

Technical requirements for authorisation

Locomotives, multiple units, coaches and freight wagons shall fulfill requirements in the relevant TSIs, se specific pages. They shall also fulfill specific national requirements for "open points" and "specific cases" specified in the TSIs.

OTMs, shunters, trams, metro vehicles and imported used vehicles shall fulfill national requirements, se specific pages. Normally we require that new types of vehicles shall be a least as safe as corresponding vehicles in operation today in Sweden. The new vehicle also has to be interoperable with the network they are designed to operate on.