31 August 2021
In any working environment, it is crucial that the
appropriate legal health and safety measures are firmly in place to safeguard workforces,
and to ensure that potentially hazardous equipment is fit for purpose and being
This is where the implementation of strict legal standards
like ATEX certification and zone classification play a vital role in ensuring
operations run safely.
Here, we explore ATEX certification and zone
classifications, and how ATEX compliant rugged devices protect
operations within hazardous environments.
What is ATEX?
The ATEX directives are a set of two strict pieces of EU legislation
that set out the minimum safety requirements for workplaces and equipment used
in explosive environments.
They came into force on the 1st July 2003 and state that any
equipment used in potentially explosive atmospheres within the EU is required
to comply with the ATEX directive.
The name ATEX derives from the French title of the 94/9/EC
directive (Appareils destinés à être utilisés en ATmosphères EXplosibles).
Any equipment in use before July 2003 can continued to be
used, provided a risk assessment shows it is safe to do so.
What is the purpose of ATEX certification?
ATEX certification ensures that any equipment or protective
system is fit for its intended purpose. It also ensures that adequate
information is supplied with the certification to ensure that any equipment can
be used safely within hazardous environments.
How is ATEX implemented in the UK?
While the ATEX directives is legislation set out by the European
Parliament, by law, they must be embodied into the laws of each EU member. As the
ATEX regulations are already part of UK law, they are not affected by the UK’s
exit from Europe. The legislation covering the ATEX directives are embedded
into the UK’s legal system through the Dangerous Substances and Explosive
Atmosphere Regulations (DSEAR).
The DSEAR is the UK’s implementation of the European Union’s
ATEX directive into the UK legal system. DSEAR places the ownness on employers
- Reduce or eliminate risks from dangerous
substances in the workplace.
- Identify and control fire, and explosion
hazards, to protect employees, assets and the working environment.
ATEX zone classifications
ATEX uses zone numbers to distinguish between environments with
different levels of danger. The ownness and responsibility lies with the
employer to ensure that their working environments are correctly classified:
ATEX zones 20 and 0 represent the most dangerous workplace
classifications and TouchStar
There are several
zone classifications which apply to different working environments. At
TouchStar, our range of specialist devices are suitable for zones 1 and 2.
Zones 1 and 2 are not
prohibitive to the use of rugged mobile computers, in fact there are a several
of our devices that are purpose built for zones 1 and zone 2.
Our zone 2 devices
are suitable for the following industries:
Fuel distribution markets (bulk logistics)
Hazardous chemical markets requiring rugged
ATEX certified rugged devices
At TouchStar, we understand that when you are working in any
hazardous environment, it is critical that the equipment being used complies with
legal safety standards and keeps operations safe.
Each of our rugged devices are ATEX certified, and all
comply with the protective standards as set out in the ATEX directives.
Our wide selection of sophisticated rugged devices,
including the TS3200 boast an array of features which ensure they are ATEX certified:
- Each of our rugged devices have been specially
designed to withstand the demands of potentially explosive atmospheres.
- Not only does their robust design mean they can operate
safely within hazardous environments, but they will deliver high performance
data capture, regardless of the conditions they are used in.
- Our ATEX mobile computers are built to last and
integrate materials including metal alloy chassis, silicon mounted chassis and
- Our long-standing relationships with well-known names
in ATEX environments enable us to offer a partnership led approach, full
end-to-end service and post-sales support.
Find out more about our range of ATEX certified rugged
Operate safely today with rugged devices from TouchStar
Ensure you are operating safely and complying with ATEX
standards with the help of TouchStar’s rugged mobile devices. To find out more
about how they could benefit your business, get in touch today.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR - PETER MARSH
Peter joined TouchStar (formally Belgravium) in a sales manager role in 2001. Prior to joining the company, Peter held Partner and National Sales Manager roles within the parcel and logistics industries.
In 2011 Peter was promoted to Sales Director and is now actively involved in promoting the value of TouchStar’s Rugged Mobile Computing solutions to the warehouse, logistics, manufacturing and field service industries. When not involved in the business, Peter is a keen and enthusiastic football and cricket fan.