5 Must-Dos for Hazardous Area Compliance

Wednesday 10 July

No matter your industry, if you have a hazardous area present in your workplace, compliance should be at the top of your priority list.

With the risk of fire and explosion ever present, meeting regulations is not only a way to avoid hefty penalties, but ultimately the best way to avoid accidents and keep your employees and facility as safe as possible.

As hazardous area experts, here are 5 must-dos we would recommend to optimise safety:

1. Never skip an inspection

With the busyness of daily operations, it can be all too common for companies to skip or forego an inspection. However, regular electrical and ATEX inspections from a qualified engineer can be the greatest preventative measure.

Electrical equipment, in particular, is a potential ignition source, so this aspect of your workplace needs to be kept in perfect working condition. 

Our recommendation: Get a periodic inspection carried out on your facility every 3 years or less.

2. Keep on top of classification

Hazardous Area Classification (HAC) is key to keeping the risks of dangerous substances at bay and is a major requirement of DSEAR which requires a risk assessment of fire and explosion hazards in a workplace. 

Through classification, you can zone areas based on the dangers present to ensure any electrical and even non-electrical equipment is safe to use in that area and won’t provide a source of ignition. 

Our recommendation: Invest in a Hazardous Area Classification Drawing which will give you a visualisation of ignition sources and potential risks.

3. Have an up-to-date DSEAR risk assessment at hand

The Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations 2002 requires duty holders to identify and assess hazards in the workplace and put control measures in place to mitigate these risks, which can be done through a risk assessment. 

Getting regular DSEAR risk assessments demonstrates that your workplace is dedicated to the safety of its employees. It can also serve as documentation for keeping employees informed, which is another aspect of DSEAR compliancy.

Our recommendation: Take the stress out of doing a DSEAR risk assessment internally by having one carried out by a qualified professional.

4. Consider new installations for efficiency

This point goes hand in hand with regular inspections, as often an inspection may identify the need for the replacement of existing installations.

Not only can new installations keep your facility safe, but they can also go a long way in improving cost-efficiency and sustainability. A common example of this is switching outdated light fixtures with new hazardous area LED lighting. 

Our recommendation: Make sure you have any hazardous area installations carried out by an accredited electrical contractor, no matter how minor they are.

5. Set up a maintenance plan

Although electrical equipment may appear to be working smoothly, where hazardous areas are concerned it’s definitely not worth the gamble!

By setting up a maintenance plan you are ensuring that your equipment is regularly checked, and repairs made to improve its safety. Not only this, but it can help save money in the long run by increasing the lifespan of your equipment.

This point is particularly crucial if there is a high level of risk at your workplace as it will validate compliance to section 5 of DSEAR. 

Our recommendation: Contemplate a Planned Preventative Maintenance Program which is a tailored all-in-one solution for inspections, repairs and servicing.

Need Any Advice?

We have supported companies in the industry for over 20 years now, so we understand how daunting hazardous area compliance can be, especially when you have a demanding business to run. 

This is why we provide services led by electrical engineers with stringent quality regimes and the latest accreditations to uphold regulations. 

Got a query about your facility? Simply contact our team today for a no-obligation discussion!

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