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Introduction to the Seveso III Directive

A new Directive dated 24 July 2012 on the control of major accident hazards involving dangerous substances (known as 'Seveso III') was published on 24 July 2012 and will be written into domestic legislation which will come into force on 1 June 2015.  It will amend and subsequently repeal the Seveso II Directive

The Seveso III Directive is implemented in Great Britain through the Control of Major Accident Hazards (COMAH) Regulations and planning legislation which is the responsibility of the Department for Communities and Local Government (CLG) and the devolved administrations in Scotland and Wales.

These web pages, which will be updated as transposition of the Directive develops, include details of the main changes in the Seveso III Directive and how it will affect businesses and the emergency and planning authorities in the UK.  There is also a ‘question and answers’ section and a copy of a presentation about the new Directive which is designed to be used for familiarisation purposes and can be tailored to suit the users needs.

A new Directive dated 24 July 2012 on the control of major accident hazards involving dangerous substances (known as ‘Seveso III’) has been published. It  and has to be implemented in the UK by 1 June 2015. It will amend and subsequently repeal the Seveso II Directive.

Seveso III addresses the consequences to the regulation of major accident hazard sites from changes to EU legislation on the classification, packaging and labelling of chemical substances and mixtures.

It strengthens a number of areas such as public access to information and standards of inspection and will continue to ensure a high level of protection to human health and the environment from major accidents involving dangerous substances.

The Seveso III Directive will be implemented through new COMAH Regulations which will come into force on 1 June 2015.  The planning elements will be implemented through new planning legislation which will come into force on the same date.  Planning legislation is the responsibility of the Department for Communities and Local Government (CLG) and the devolved administrations in Scotland and Wales.

Implementation timetable

Now – early 2014

Informal consultation with industry and stakeholders

March 2014 (approx)

Formal Consultation on COMAH 2015 to be published

Summer 2014

Consultation response published

Summer 2014 – early 2015

New Regs redrafted based on consultation response and final legal package put together

Early 2015

Regulations laid before Parliament

March 2015 (approx)

Publication of Guidance on COMAH 2015 (including replacement for L111)

31 May 2015

Deadline for transposition of Seveso III

1 June 2015

COMAH 2015 Regs enter into force in GB

This timetable will be updated as soon as firmer dates are available.

If you have any queries about the Seveso III Directive they can be e-mailed to Seveso.III.Enquiries@hse.gsi.gov.uk.

Updated: 2013-08-14