Operator obligations for extraction systems and filtration equipment
for safe and reliable system operation
Manufacturers and operators of machinery and systems engineering must comply with a number of legal regulations in order to ensure their safe operation. These are summarised in the Machinery Directive, but also in some other regulations.
An operator is the one who is responsible for the operation, has the required effective and legal power of disposition, benefits from it (e.g. Profit) and is authorised to issue orders to the employees or operates the company on its behalf or in its name and for its account. The operator is responsible for the proper external operation.
Directive 190 "Operator Responsibility" of the German Facility Management Association (Deutscher Verband für Facility Management e.V.) defines the operator as the one who owns a property with a building, operates a building with building services equipment, acts as an employer, i.e.employs workers or provides jobs and/or work equipment.
Operator responsibility extends over the entire property owned, including all adjacent external areas such as storage spaces, paths, entrances, parking or the factory premises. In order to protect both the persons and the environment, the operators are under the responsibility to take all necessary and reasonable measures and to act within the meaning of the Basic Law (GG), Article 14 "Ownership entails obligations".
The company management determines the work processes to fulfil its organisational duties, executives monitor compliance with the work processes in accordance with their management duties, and the employees adhere to the work processes as part of the implementation obligations. Company management selects suitable work equipment to fulfil its organisational duties, and executives, managers ensure that these resources are provided as part of their management duties, which the employees use in accordance with their performance obligations.
Essential tasks and duties of the operator (employer) are listed in theIndustrial Safety Ordinance.
Here we would like to draw your attention to the preparation of risk assessments (Sec. 3).
Machinery Directive 2006/42/EG also applies for operators.
According to Sec. 6 (9) of the Hazardous Substances Ordinance (GefStoffV), explosion protection documents must be set up for hazardous explosive mixtures.
Ventilation measures for workplace ventilation are regulated in the BGR 121. For the health protection of your employees, pay particular attention to the maintenance and cleaning tasks listed under Item 3.6.4 as well as the inspection obligations for ventilation and air conditioning systems mentioned under Item 3.7.
‘Grandfathering’ does not count anymore!
After 1993, when manufacturers were first obligated to only market safe machinery (introduction of the CE marking and declaration of conformity), operators must also ensure the state-of-the-art safety of their machines. This is required by Operating Safety Regulation, which was revised in 2015.
Risk assessments and the resulting safety measures should offer employees more safety and health protection. It follows that old machines without CE marking and conformity are not subject to the so-called "grandfathering". Here, too, the operator is responsible for safety according to the current state of the art. The declaration of conformity must be obtained.