Bridges are one of the important structures that are being used in our day to day lives. The design process of elements of the bridge is a complex procedure and is based on mostly research and experience to arrive at a balance between safety, functionality, and economy. Among all the elements of the bridge, piers are considered as the most important because of the higher stress concentration in them. Hence, the safety and reliability of the pier to satisfy its purpose during its lifetime is of core importance. The purpose of this work is to study the safety of an existing pier of a railway bridge. The resistance of the pier is assumed to be composed of many random variables. Considering them as random variables, reliability analysis is performed to evaluate the probability of failure of the pier by determining whether the limit-state function is exceeded. The study also focuses on the determination of reliability index of the pier when fatigue in concrete is taken into consideration. © 2019, Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd.