What does the SEVESO III Directive mean for operating companies?

February 24, 2015

SEVESO III is the principle piece of legislation relating to the prevention and control of major chemical accidents. Dangerous substances are grouped by their properties i.e. fire and  toxicity.

The DSD (Dangerous Substances Directive) is to be replaced by a European regulation for Globally Harmonised System for the classification, labeling and packaging of chemical substance and mixture (CLP). Currently only “very toxic” and “toxic” materials are covered under the Seveso II directive.

Under Seveso III the catagories 1, 2 and 3 for inhalation exposure routes and catagories 1 and 2 for oral and dermal exposure routes will be covered. Under the new directive more acutely toxic materials previously considered harmful will be brought in under category 3 materials. This will have significant affect on companies who handle such materials.

Some new named substances to come under this new Directive:

  • Anhydrous ammonia
  • Hydrogen sulphide
  • Liquefied flammable gases
  • Petroleum products and alternative fuels

Operating Companies Requirements

Companies will now need to collate appropriate documentation that was not required in the past. They will need to prepare a MAPP (Major Accident Prevention Policy), A Full Safety Report and there will be frequent inspections from the Competent Authority.

Seveso III is now required to adhere to the Aarhus Convention on public information. Companies have to provide information relating to their activities that in this case refers to their storing and handling of Hazardous Materials, their MAPP and their Safety report. They must make available to the public and the relevant authority their process hazards and the control measures they have in place. Seveso III places more emphasis on inspection. Routine inspections of all establishments will be based on their risk profile.

Additional inspections will be carried out in cases of non-compliance.

The SEVESO III Directive comes into law by June 2015. All companies must be compliant by then.

Companies must not wait until this date to take action.

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