Safe working in hazardous areas

11 January 2018

Safe working in hazardous areas has both a human dimension: knowledge and competence, and a physical dimension: use of suitable equipment and materials.

EEMUA’s seminar on 15 February 2018 aims to bring the two together in focusing on some areas of known difficulty. It will provide updates on the current issues and progress to safer working:

  • Where next on competency? Competency schemes for work in explosive atmospheres developed since the Piper Alpha disaster have followed the principles outlined in IEC 60079. But how best to meet those requirements is currently under discussion. We take a look at what that means for the user.
  • Vapour cloud hazards. A number of accidents have demonstrated that the mists of high flashpoint fluids can be capable of ignition and explosion at far lower temperatures than their flashpoints. When might dangerous conditions arise, and what might the user do to prevent them?
  • Portable devices in hazardous areas. The pervasive nature of personal portable devices and the increasing energy storage density of successive generations of batteries has resulted in elevated levels of risk at sites where an explosive atmosphere may be present. EEMUA and the Energy Institute have worked together to evaluate the risks so that site operators may be given appropriate guidance. 
  • Estimation of hazardous areas. Since the revised IEC 60079-10-1 was published two years ago serious concerns have existed due to deficiencies in the calculation methods for size of hazardous areas. The standard is being reappraised and changes are likely but what should sites do in the meantime?
  • Assemblies in hazardous areas. Though it sounds simple to have a whole assembly certified as a single entity there are some pitfalls to be aware of. How does it work in practice?   
  • “When is a cable not a cable?” “When it’s a barrier gland!” Surely that can’t be right? Well that seemed almost to be what the IEC was expecting when IEC 60079-14:2013 was published.  A first set of tests for EEMUA indicated that the IEC criteria for use of a barrier gland were flawed. A second set of tests, carried out according to IEC criteria, has confirmed that position. Hear the background, and the latest results.      

This seminar should be of interest to all practitioners and duty holders with a responsibility for specifying and approving installations in hazardous areas.   

Registration is open now  online. Participants in EEMUA Member companies and EEMUA Associates may attend the event free of charge.