EU Directives for Regulations updates to COMAH and Safety Case

Following Seveso III Directive (2012/18/EU) that deals with the control of onshore accident hazards involving dangerous substances, the Control of Major Accident Hazards (COMAH) Regulations 2015, SI 2015/483 (COMAH 2015), comes into force on 1 July 2015. The purpose of COMAH 2015 is to prevent major accidents involving dangerous substances and limit the consequences to people and the environment of any accidents that do occur. The COMAH Regulations apply mainly to the chemical and petrochemical industries, fuel storage and distribution, and alcohol production and storage (maturation). They may also affect businesses that store gas, manufacture and store explosives, or which have large warehouses or distribution facilities storing dangerous substances, e.g. agrochemicals, flammable liquids and propellants like aerosols.

Likewise, with EU Directive (2013/30/EU) on safety of offshore oil and gas operations, the Offshore Installations (Offshore Safety Directive) (Safety Case etc.) Regulations 2015, SI 2015/398 (SCR 2015), comes into force on 19 July 2015. The underpinning principle of SCR 2015 is that duty holders must manage both safety and environmental impacts of major accident risks, including hydrocarbon releases and blowouts, effectively. This SCR Regulations places new requirements upon the operator/owner, including those of:

  • Corporate Major Accident Prevention Policy (CMAPP);
  • Safety and Environmental Management System (SEMS);
  • Safety and Environmental Critical Elements (SECE);
  • Verification and well examination schemes;
  • Internal emergency response arrangements;
  • Well, design, relocation, and combined operations notifications; and
  • Major accident notifications.

Meeting the requirements of COMAH and /or SCR Regulations for an organisation demands sound expertise. Safe Dimensions has significant experience of both COMAH and Safety Case preparation, management and delivery in aiding clients meet these demands. We are uniquely placed to support clients in taking into account of all relevant changes and new knowledge, and more so ensuring the validity of COMAH or safety case for submission and assessment by the competent authority and enforcing agencies in the UK (which are the UK Health and Safety Executive (UK HSE) and either the Environment Agency in England, Natural Resources Wales (NRW) in Wales or the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) in Scotland, for the onshore COMAH safety report, and comprises of UK HSE and Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) working in partnership, for the offshore Safety Case).

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