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ATEX is a European Law that came into force in 2003. It states that where ever flammable substances are used or stored, specific actions must be taken to ensure they are safe places of work. The first action is to determine, through a risk assessment, where hazardous areas or explosive atmospheres are likely to be and then to divide these areas into zones. There are 3 ATEX zones.

 

zone 0 is a place where an explosive atmosphere is present continuously or for long periods

zone 1 is a place where an exposive atmosphere is likely to occur in normal operation

zone 2 is a place where an explosive atmosphere is not likely to occur but if it does it will exist only for a short period  

 

Once the zones have been identified, hazardous area classification drawings must be produced and only suitably certified electrical equipment can be used there so a full 100% inspection is needed. All inspection records must be kept for verification of compliance to HSE and insurance companies. Other demands of ATEX are to:

 

  • mark hazardous areas with Ex signs at every point of entry

  • have in place a permit to work system

  • provide anti-static clothing to workers

  • provide hazardous area awareness training to workers

  • maintain an explosion protection document to include risk assessment, area classification, the inspection procedure/plan, inspection records, details of staff hazardous area training and the permit to work system

                                                                             contact details: Tel +44 (0)191 4975846             email info@atexinspections.com

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What is ATEX?