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SGS Baseefa’s Technical Manager, Ron Sinclair, attended the European Commission’s ATEX Working Group on 18 February 2016.  He is pleased to confirm that the guidance document for the new ATEX Directive 2014/34/EU will be available prior to the 20 April deadline for transition from 94/9/EC.  For the last nine months, he has been part of the editorial team preparing the ATEX Guidelines document.

The Commission Working Group, comprising mainly representatives from the member countries, has a responsibility to approve and disseminate interpretational material related to both the legal and the practical aspects of the legislation. The document was approved by The Commission Working Group with only a few minor changes requested, taking account of Working Group discussions since parts of the document were written. The document is expected to be published in English in early April, allowing time to prepare two or three of the other language versions prior to the 20 April transition deadline.

The new directive, which replaces 94/9/EC, is a ‘recast’ rather than a revision of the previous text.  This was done to take account of format changes required by the New Legislative Framework and was not intended to have any technical effect on products.  In fact, the new directive specifically says that certificates issued to 94/9/EC are to be treated as giving presumption of conformity to 2014/34/EU.

For most manufacturers, the only immediate concern is to have new versions of their Declaration of Conformity (DoC) in place by 20 April. As publicised earlier by SGS Baseefa, the Commission have given permission to issue DoC documents referring to both directives with their applicable validity dates.  It will be possible for SGS Baseefa to issue EU-Type Examination Supplementary certificates, maintaining the existing EC-Type Examination number that previously existed. This is particularly important for manufacturers’ literature and arrangements for marking products.

Non-EU manufacturers who use an Authorised Representative or a Distributor based in the EU need to read the specific parts of the directive requiring these particular "Economic Operators" to take responsibility for document translation and retention.

Much of the guidance for 2014/34/EU replicates the existing guidance for 94/9/EC, so do not expect to make significant changes. If you need confirmation of anything specific, please contact:

Ron Sinclair
Technical Manager
SGS Baseefa Ltd
t: +44 (0) 1298 766600
f: +44 (0) 1298 766601

About SGS

SGS is the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company. SGS is recognized as the global benchmark for quality and integrity. With more than 85,000 employees, SGS operates a network of over 1,800 offices and laboratories around the world.