Autoclaves are pressure vessels with lids or doors, arranged for regular access. They are used in a variety of processes, where products are placed inside the vessel and subjected to greater than atmospheric pressures and, in most cases, elevated temperatures.
This guidance has been prepared in response to two fatalities. It covers industrial autoclaves and is aimed at all employers, supervisors and managers responsible for the safe operation and maintenance of these devices. It specifically addresses the risks associated with safeguarding, training and maintenance. It can also help Notified Bodies (responsible for conformity assessment) and Competent Persons (devising written schemes of thorough examination) to assess the autoclave and identify measures for risk reduction.