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Proposed changes to law and guidance on acetylene

Proposed changes to law and guidance on acetylene

Proposals to consolidate and modernise legislative controls for acetylene

Consultation is out on proposed changes to legislation controlling Acetylene that could affect many workplaces and manufacturers of equipment.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has set out proposals to consolidate and modernise the Acetylene legislative framework. The consolidation will update the current legislative arrangements for acetylene making them easier to understand.

The consolidation is part of the sector specific consolidations recommended by Professor Löfstedt’s independent review of health and safety legislation ‘Reclaiming health and safety for all’ which are to be delivered by April 2015.

The HSE is also reviewing the supporting guidance and is seeking views on the information currently available.

The HSE say that it is the intention that typical acetylene users who currently comply with the law and suitable HSE or industry guidance will not need to change workplace practice.  Examples of suitable guidance in various situations include:

  • HSE ‘Take care with acetylene’ INDG327 and ‘The safe use of compressed gases in welding, flame cutting and allied processes’ HSG139
  • British Compressed Gases Association guidance, ‘The safe distribution of Acetylene in the pressure range 0-1.5 bar’ CP6 2009.
  • European Industrial Gases Association, Code of Practice Acetylene, IGC DOC 123/04/E.

The consultation period runs to 24 September 2013.  The draft version of the legislation and a document summarising the current legal position are available on the HSE website, see the links to download a pdf version of each document.  Your views can be provided using the online questionnaire.