Pressure System Safety Regulations
The Pressure Systems Safety Regulations 2000 came into force on the 21st February 2000, and revoked, re-enacted and amended the Pressure Systems and Transportable Gas Containers Regulations 1989. Designers, manufacturers, importers, suppliers, users and owners of pressure systems must ensure that they comply with the Regulations. The Regulations govern the way pressure systems must be managed.
A pressure system is defined by Regulation 2 as:-
- a system comprising one or more pressure vessels of rigid construction, any associated pipework and protective devices;
- the pipework with its protective decies to which a transportable pressure receptacle (gas cylinder) is connected, but not including the transportable pressure receptacle;
- a pipeline and its protective devices;
which contains or is liable to contain steam or any relevant fuild at a pressure greater than 0.5 bar above atmospheric.
Written Scheme of Examination
No pressure system to be used at work should be operated unless there is a Written Scheme for the periodic examination of the following system parts:
- protective devices and pressure vessels;
- pipework parts and pipelines in which a defect may give rise to danger.
The Written Scheme of Examination must state the nature and frequency of the examinations, specify any extra measures necessary to prepare the system for safe examination and, where appropriate, must provide for an examination to be carried out before the system is first used.
The Written Scheme should be drawn up by a 'competent person', or if drawn up by someone other than a competent person, certified as suitable by a 'competent person'.
The examinations specified in the Written Scheme need to be carried out at the required intervals. These must include both thorough examinations with the plant stripped down and working examinations to test the protective devices and controls.
Some types of plant are exempt from all regulationse.g. small refigeration systems under 25kW total combined input power. Others are exempt from some regulations but must comply with others. e.g. where all the pressure vessels in a system are individually less than 250 bar litres (pressure in bar x volume in litres) there is no need for a Written Scheme or periodic examinations by a 'competent person'. However, there is a requirement to maintain and inspect.