An offshore installation does not meet the definition of 'equipment', 'protective system', 'device' or 'component', as defined in the EPS Regulations and so they do not apply to the offshore installation as an entity. In any event, the EPS Regulations do not apply to used or second hand products, which were on the market or put into service in the EU prior to 1 July 2003.
The EPS Regulations allow any safe product which was in service in the EU on or before 30 June 2003 to remain in service indefinitely, whether it is European or non-European certified.
Straightforward repairs to products are not within the scope of the EPS Regulations. Any repair to such a product, which affects the EHSRs, could be a 'substantial modification' and therefore require the product to be conformity assessed again.
Spares, which a manufacturer, distributor or end user had in stock on 1 July 2003, are considered to be already on the market and therefore an end user may legitimately purchase and use them.
Note that spare parts – which are not 'equipment', 'protective systems', 'devices' or 'components' as defined in the EPS Regulations – required to repair a product are unaffected by the EPS Regulations. Spare parts placed on the market from 1 July 2003 which are 'equipment', 'protective systems', 'devices' or 'components' as defined in the EPS Regulations, must comply with the conformity assessment requirements of the EPS Regulations.
The manufacturer of an EPS Regulation product is required to provide instructions with the product which must include, among other things, instructions for the safe putting into service. For a telephone handset, this would require instructions as to how individual handsets can safely be connected to an EPS Regulation intrinsically safe telephone system. If the manufacturer was also marketing the handset for connection to an existing pre-EPS Regulation, intrinsically safe, telephone systems then relevant instructions for this application would also need to be supplied, as required by section 6 of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.
A system / assembly produced on site, using a mixture of EPS and non-EPS Regulation parts, is the responsibility of the user and not the equipment manufacturer. The user is required to comply with any instructions for putting into service supplied by the manufacturer of the telephone handset, and also adhere to the instructions and the intrinsically safe system certificate conditions for the existing telephone system. If the user is unable to make a decision about the connection themselves, expert advice should be sought from a competent person, eg a notified body. The resulting extended telephone system will be a modification of a system that was on the market pre-ATEX and, as such, the EPS Regulations do not apply to it. Any enforcement action being considered by inspectors would be appropriate under worker protection legislation, such as PUWER.
Very little mechanical equipment is an ignition risk in normal operation, but it may become a risk in fault conditions. A thorough consideration of existing equipment would include the following steps:
The EPS Regulations relate to the supply of new equipment and do not apply in these circumstances, unless something is modified sufficiently to make it effectively a new product. Simple silos and bins are not in any case ATEX equipment, unless they include as an integral part, equipment or fittings that create an ignition risk. Both DSEAR, and PUWER (Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations) are relevant to bringing into service second hand equipment. The design of any equipment newly brought into service needs to be reviewed and verified as fit for purpose. PUWER regulation 10 makes clear that equipment brought into service at a new site needs to comply with the ATEX Directives, and / or other single market Directives that applied when it was first supplied or put into service. Explosion vent panels that have no information about the standard to which they have been built and tested, nor any details of the opening pressure, cannot easily be shown to be fit for purpose. A risk assessment under DSEAR would be likely to conclude that new panels, carrying the CE and Ex in a hexagon mark, should be fitted to the silos.