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What is ATEX Rating?

Each year fire and explosions in hazardous environments account for a significant number of industrial accidents Worldwide, many of which are preventable with the right knowledge, equipment, and training. The ATEX directive was put in place as a way to explain what health and safety measures should be put in place to protect employees in explosive atmospheres.

The term 'ATEX' originates from the French 'ATmosphères EXplosibles', referring to spaces where flammable or explosive gases and dust are present in the atmosphere. These substances pose serious safety concerns due to the risk of fire or explosions.

We understand that handling industrial drums in ATEX environments without the correct manual handling equipment not only jeopardises the safety of employees but also puts property at risk. Our team is able to talk you through the requirements to help you choose the correct equipment for your zone. Here are some key considerations when choosing drum handling equipment for ATEX environments.

Certification and Compliance for ATEX

Equipment used in ATEX environments must undergo rigorous assessment. It should always carry the ATEX ‘Ex’ symbol and the correct classification for the area it will be used in. For those working in ATEX environments, it is crucial to consult with your company's Health and Safety Representative to accurately determine if your workspace falls within an ATEX zoned area and to understand the specific safety measures required.

Product certification should include a Declaration of Conformity document, which verifies that the equipment meets strict safety standards. Certified equipment will have been designed to prevent the origination of sparks or flames during operation. Moreover, the surface temperatures of all components will have been assessed to eliminate potential ignition sources. This careful evaluation ensures that operation of the equipment does not ignite explosive atmospheres.

ATEX-compliant Design and Materials

The materials used in manufacturing ATEX-compliant equipment are selected with caution. For example, the use of non-conductive materials like certain plastics is limited due to their potential to accumulate static electricity. When polymers such as polycarbonate must be used, they must be treated with an anti-static coating to prevent static buildup on the material’s surface.

Grounding and Earthing ATEX material handling equipment

All ATEX material handling equipment must be effectively earthed or grounded. This grounding process ensures that any static or electrical charges that may accumulate are safely dissipated to ground. Grounding is typically achieved by bonding all conductive metal parts together and by installing earthing chains or cables to maintain consistent contact with the ground.

If you’d like to find out more about preventative measures and ATEX environments, take a look at Challenges of Drum Handling in ATEX Environments (Link) or for more information on purchasing drum handling equipment for ATEX, contact our team.

Looking for ATEX Materials Handling Equipment?

Looking for ATEX Materials Handling Equipment?

We are a world-leading provider of quality drum handling solutions designed for use in ATEX zones. 

Whether you need moving, tipping, mixing, or lifting equipment we manufacture a range products that have been built and tested to last. Find out more about our equipment by clicking the link below. If you have any questions, our expert team is always available to support and guide you.  

Our ATEX Equipment