Competent Authority procedures and delivery guides
The following guidance has been prepared by the COMAH competent authority (CA).
- General guidance for COMAH operators
- CA internal guidance – assessment
- Assessment and inspection
- Strategic topic delivery guides
- Mechanical Integrity Delivery Guide
- Investigation and enforcement
General guidance for COMAH establishment operators
These guides have been produced with Industry to provide general information for COMAH establishment operators.
- Understanding COMAH: A guide for new entrants
This guidance is aimed at businesses that are considering expanding their operations and may consequently become subject to COMAH as:
- new lower-tier COMAH establishments, or
- new upper-tier COMAH establishments (including lower-tier establishments that become upper-tier)
- ALARP - As low as reasonably practicable
- Arrangements for supporting businesses moving into COMAH
This aims to help businesses moving into the scope of COMAH ensure that they are able to get the right advice on what they need to do should the Regulations apply to their activities.
When planning to begin handling or storing large quantities of dangerous substances, businesses may become subject to COMAH. COMAH may also apply if a business decides to increase the quantities of dangerous substances that they already store or handle.
- Understanding COMAH: What to expect from the Competent Authority - A guide for COMAH operators
This document aims to:
- describe the basic arrangements for the COMAH competent authority's (CA's) regulatory activities;
- clear describe what activities CA regulators recover the costs for.
- COMAH Intervention Managers – User Manual
This is for CA inspectors who are COMAH Intervention Managers (CIMs) and COMAH establishment operators. It aims to help COMAH operators and CIMs work together to ensure the risks from major accident hazards are being managed appropriately.
- Understanding COMAH: The Performance and Recognition Framework
This describes how the CA takes account of operator performance in controlling major accident risks when planning inspections.
- Examples of operator activities in scope of the Performance and Recognition Framework
Industry representatives, who helped develop the framework, have also provided some useful examples of the type of activities operators may wish to highlight during these discussions
- Understanding COMAH: How Operators can challenge regulatory decisions made by the Competent Authority - A guide for COMAH Operators
This explains how COMAH establishment Operators can seek clarification on – and where they disagree challenge – CA regulatory decisions aimed at bringing them into compliance with the law. This challenge mechanism was developed jointly by the CA and Industry.
- Guidance on the interpretation of major accident to the Environment for the purposes of the COMAH Regulations
This publication is now out of date and is due to be replaced. Meanwhile it still contains useful guidance on what constitutes a major accident to the environment.
- As low as reasonably practicable (ALARP)
Reasonably practicable involves weighing a risk against the trouble, time and money needed to control it. ALARP describes the level to which we expect to see workplace risks controlled.
CA internal guidance - COMAH safety report assessment
The following have been developed by the CA for internal use. and describe the arrangements for receiving, handling and assessing COMAH safety reports. Together they form what are known as the:
- safety report assessment manual (SRAM),
- safety report assessment guides (SRAGs) and
- safety report assessment technical criteria.
The safety report content that CA assessors will look for has not changed but SRAM has been updated to reflect improvements in CA procedures and to bring together guidance that was previously contained elsewhere.
The content and format of the SRAM and SRAGs will be kept under review.
COMAH 2015 safety report assessment manual (SRAM)
The SRAM document is the COMAH Competent Authority's internally-targeted guidance on the assessment of COMAH safety reports. It describes the framework within which the CA undertakes the assessment of safety reports and the processes its staff should follow in assessing safety reports submitted to them by operators of upper-tier COMAH establishments, pursuant to regulations 9 and 10 of the Control of Major Accident Hazards Regulations 2015 (COMAH).
- COMAH SRAM 2015 - Introduction and index
- COMAH SRAM 2015 - Descriptive criteria
- COMAH SRAM 2015 - Predictive criteria
- COMAH SRAM 2015 - MAPP - SMS criteria
- COMAH SRAM 2015 - Mechanical engineering criteria
- COMAH SRAM 2015 - Electrical control and instrumentation criteria
- COMAH SRAM 2015 - Process safety criteria
- COMAH SRAM 2015 - Humans factor criteria
- COMAH SRAM 2015 - Environmental criteria
- COMAH SRAM 2015 - Emergency response criteria
COMAH 1999 safety report assessment guides (SRAGs)
- Safety report assessment guide: Chlorine
- Safety report assessment guide: Chemical Warehouses
- Safety report assessment guide: Explosives
- Safety report assessment guide: LPG
- Safety report assessment guide: HFL
- Safety report assessment guide: Methane Gas Bullets
- Safety report assessment guide: Methane Gas Holders
- Safety report assessment guide: Whisky Maturation Warehouses
- COMAH 1999 safety report assessment technical criteria
- SRAM criterion 5.1
- SRAM criterion 5.2
- SRAM criterion 5.2.1 Design
- SRAM criterion 5.2.2 Construction
- SRAM criterion 5.2.3 Operation
- SRAM criterion 5.2.4 Maintenance
- SRAM criterion 5.2.5 Modification
- Additional guidance for Control & Instrumentation specialists
- Additional guidance for Mechanical Engineering specialists
- Additional guidance on assessing predictive aspects for Explosives Sites
- Main failure modes – systems/unit operations
- Protective measures for main failure modes
- Key relevant technical standards documentation
- Key relevant case studies
Assessment and inspection
- COMAH Competent Authority Inspection of COMAH Operator Internal Emergency Planning at Upper and Lower Tier Establishments (Operational Delivery Guide)
- Competent Authority Guidance for Inspectors on Emergency Arrangements for COMAH Establishments
- COMAH Competent Authority Guidance: 'All measures necessary' - Environmental aspects
- Electrical, Control and Instrumentation (EC & I) Operational Delivery Guide
- Classification of Inherent Hazard (Safety and Environment) for COMAH Establishments
Strategic topic delivery guides
- Major Hazard Leadership Delivery Guide
- Major Hazard Leadership Intervention Tool
- Inspection of COMAH Operator Flood Preparedness (Operational Delivery Guide)
- Inspecting Human Factors at COMAH Establishments (Operational Delivery Guide)
- Secondary/Tertiary Containment Delivery Guide
- Offsite Emergency Planning Delivery Guide
- HID KPI Delivery Guide
- PSLG Delivery Guide (Buncefield Follow up)
Mechanical Integrity Delivery Guide
Investigation and enforcement
- Investigation procedure
- Enforcement Management Model (EMM): application to hazardous substances
- HSE Enforcement Management Model