The Explosives Regulations 2014 (Amendment) Regulations 2016 (ERAR2016)

The Explosives Regulations 2014 (Amendment) Regulations 2016 (ERAR2016)

The Explosives Regulations 2014 (Amendment) Regulations 2016 (ERAR2016) came into force in Great Britain (GB) on 20 April 2016 and implemented the recast of the civil use explosives directive. Northern Ireland has equivalent legislation.

ERAR2016 amended and updated the requirements for making civil use explosives available on the market and must be read alongside the Explosives Regulations 2014 (ER2014).

Some of the main changes included:

  • Clearly defined legal duties for all economic operators (manufacturers (their authorised representatives), importers and distributors) involved in the supply chain.
  • Clearly defined legal duties for Market Surveillance Authorities (MSAs), such as HSE, in terms of their cooperation with other member states.
  • Enabling MSAs, such as HSE, to require corrective action to be taken by economic operators, or commensurate with any risk, and require economic operators to withdraw or recall non-conforming civil use explosives from the market.
  • Civil use explosives placed on the market must be accompanied by instructions and safety information, in a language which is easily understood by consumers and end-users. In the UK, this information must be in English.
  • Widening of record-keeping duties – manufacturers (their authorised representatives) and importers are required to keep a copy of the EU declaration of conformity and technical documentation, in a readable format, at the disposal of the MSA for 10 years.
  • Commercial 'own use' of explosives is explicitly brought within the scope of conformity assessment.
  • Non-compliance is explicitly considered as both administrative (ie no CE mark applied) and safety based.
  • Accreditation becomes the key route for Notified Bodies.

The regulations are supported by a suite of overarching and subsector guidance.

Amendments to support the UK's Exit from the EU

  • The Product Safety and Metrology (Amendment and Transitional Provisions) Regulations 2022 extends the period during which:
    • CE marks can be accepted on certain products, including civil explosives, from 24 months to four years from IP completion day
    • conformity markings can be placed on a label affixed to the product, or a document accompanying the product, rather than on the product itself, from 36 months to seven years from IP completion day
    • information identifying an importer can be set out in a document accompanying the imported product from 24 months to seven years from IP completion day

It also provides that where a manufacturer has taken action under EU conformity assessment procedures before 31st December 2024, that action will be treated as if taken under the conformity assessment procedures which apply in Great Britain. The provision includes conditions relating to the continued validity of certificates issued in respect of the EU conformity assessment procedures and a cut-off date of 31st December 2027, after which the provision will cease to have effect.

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Updated: 2024-06-12