The explosion hazard is assessed by the investor, designer or user who decides on the technological process. The explosion hazard assessment includes an indication of places, rooms and external spaces in which explosive mixtures may form, and an indication of effective ignition sources that can initiate an explosion.
An explosion hazard assessment and classification into appropriate hazard zones should be carried out by a team of appropriate specialists:
- technologist responsible for the technological process,
- fire protection specialists,
- specialists in environmental protection and work safety,
- specialists electrician and ventilation engineer.
The decision of the team conducting the explosion hazard classification should be expressed in the form of a document (EPD), which becomes the basis for the selection of protective devices and systems in classified spaces.
In any situation, a risk assessment should be carried out before attempting to classify explosive atmospheres.
The explosion risk assessment initially focuses on:
- the probability of an explosive mixture occurring,
- the probability of effective sources of ignition
Risk assessment should be carried out in relation to:
- production process
- each state of the Plant's operation.
Prior to proceeding to the classification of spaces into appropriate explosion hazard zones, measures should be taken to minimize the risk of explosion.
The rooms are defined as potentially explosive if they can form an explosive mixture formed from the release of such an amount of flammable gases, vapors, mists, aerosols or dust, and their explosion could cause pressure increase exceeding 5 kPa.
The basis for recognizing the space as potentially explosive is the time of emission and persistence of factors forming explosive mixtures with air., For the classification of spaces into appropriate explosion hazard zones and the selection of explosion-proof equipment physical and chemical properties of flammable agents occurring in a given space are taken into consideration, including:
- explosion limits,
- flash point for liquids,
- auto-ignition temperatures,
- minimum ignition energies,
- explosion groups,
- density relative to air.
The areas at risk of explosion of mixtures of flammable gases and vapours of flammable liquids with air are classified in zones: 0, 1 and 2 according to the frequency and time of occurrence of the gas explosive atmosphere, while the areas at risk of explosion of mixtures of dust with air are classified in explosion hazard zones: 20, 21 and 22, depending on the frequency and duration of explosive mixtures.
An explosive atmosphere containing gases, vapours, mists and aerosols usually occurs in:
- chemical plants,
- paint shops,
- sewage treatment plants,
- power plants.
An explosive atmosphere containing dust usually occurs in:
- chemical plants,
- pharmaceuticals industry,
- power plants,
- cement plants,
- food processing plants,
- wood processing plants.
… and many other areas in which dusting or powdered products occur.
Machinery Directive 2006/42/EC
The Machinery Directive applies to: machines; machine interchangeable equipment; safety components; lifting accessories; chains, ropes and belts; detachable mechanical transmission devices and partly completed machinery. The machinery directive was introduced into Polish law by the ordinance of the Minister of Economy of October 21, 2008 on the essential requirements for machines. The directive in Poland has been in force since December 29, 2009. Earlier, the "old" machinery directive 98/37/EC was in force. Its task was to ensure the free movement of goods within the European Community.
To whom is the Machinery Directive addressed?
The directive is addressed to business entities, i.e. Manufacturers (Authorized Representative of the Manufacturer) and persons placing the machine on the market (importer, distributor) in the European Community.
Designers, constructors, technologists and other persons involved in the product development process should also familiarize himself with the provisions of the Directive
Persons responsible for managing the company / company (including the President, Owner, members of the Management Board) should also familiarize himself with the provisions of the Directive.
Persons introducing a used machine or safety component into the European Economic Area from third countries should also familiarize himself with the provisions of the Directive.
- an assembly, fitted with or intended to be fitted with a drive system different from directly applied human or animal effort, consisting of linked parts or components, at least one of which moves, and which are joined together for a specific application,
- an assembly determined in the first indent, missing only the components to connect it on site or to sources of energy and motion,
- an assembly determined in the first and second indents, ready to be installed and able to function as it stands only if mounted on a means of transport, or installed in a building or a structure,
- assemblies of machinery determined in the first, second and third indents or partly completed machinery referred to in point (g) which, in order to achieve the same end, are arranged and controlled so that they function as an integral whole,
- an assembly of linked parts or components, at least one of which moves and which are joined together, intended for lifting loads and which only power source is directly applied human effort;
EC Declaration of Conformity
The EC Declaration of Conformity is the confirmation by the manufacturer or his authorized representative that the product specified in it meets all the essential requirements described in the Machinery Directive.
On the basis of the Machinery Directive, an EC Declaration of Conformity and CE marking should be issued for the machine. However, for partly completed machinery, a Declaration of Incorporation of partly completed machinery should be issued.
The CE mark (Conformite Europeenne) - European conformity. Affixing of a mark on a product is a declaration by the manufacturer or his authorized representative that the labelled product meets the requirements of the New Approach directives or regulations related to the conformity assessment process. If the importer or distributor does not act as an authorized representative of the manufacturer, he cannot assign a mark to the product.
List of important legal acts:
1. Directive 99/92/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 December, 1999 on the minimum requirements regarding the safety and health protection of employees at workplaces where an explosive atmosphere may occur.
2. Directive 2014/34/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 February, 2014 on the harmonization of the laws of the Member States relating to equipment and protective systems intended for use in potentially explosive atmospheres.
3. Ordinance of the Minister of the Interior and Administration of 7 June, 2010 on the fire protection of buildings, other building structures and areas (Journal of Laws 2010 No. 109 item 719, as amended).
4. Ordinance of the Minister of Economy of 8 July, 2010 on minimum requirements for occupational safety and health, related to the possibility of an explosive atmosphere at the workplace (Journal of Laws 2010 No. 138 item 931).
5. Regulation of the Minister of Development of 6 June, 2016 on requirements for protective devices and systems intended for use in potentially explosive atmospheres (Journal of Laws of 2016 item 817).
6. Regulation of the Minister of Economy of November 21, 2005 on technical conditions to be met by liquid fuel bases and stations, long-distance transmission pipelines for the transport of crude oil and petroleum products and their location (Journal of Laws 2005 No. 243 item 2063, as amended).
1. What requirements should meet so-called "old" machines which were bought and put into use before 2003?
Machines used in the territory of the Republic of Poland before January 1, 2003 should meet the requirements set out in the provisions of the Regulation of the Minister of Economy of October 30, 2002 on minimum requirements for occupational health and safety in the use of machinery by employees during work (Journal of Laws from 2002, No. 191, item 1596, as amended).
Such machines should be inspected in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 4 of the above-mentioned Regulation, and the results of these inspections should be registered and made available to the authorities concerned for a period of 5 years from the date of completion of the inspection. The deadline for adapting machines to the minimum requirements expired on January 1, 2006.
2. What requirements should new machines meet?
New machines placed on the market or put into service in the territory of the Republic of Poland should meet the requirements arising from the Regulation of the Minister of Economy of October 21, 2008 on the essential requirements for machines (Journal of Laws of 2008 No. 199, item 1228, as amended) transposing into national law the requirements of the Machinery Directive 2006/42 / EC and the requirements arising from separate provisions (if applicable).
Machines should be properly marked, including the CE mark. The manufacturer should confirm compliance with the requirements in the EC declaration of conformity which should accompany the machine. The product should be accompanied by instructions in Polish and possibly the original instructions and a translation of this manual (if it was originally developed in another language).
Internet System of Legal Acts
National Labour Inspectorate
Central Institute for Labour Protection