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Start of series: From risk assessment to CE marking

In our "Safe machinery, step by step" series we present the individual measures needed en route to CE marking, one by one.

In our "Safe machinery, step by step" series we present the individual measures needed en route to CE marking, one by one. This article provides information about the risk assessment and safety concept.

Background to the legal position

Machine manufacturers are obliged to carry out a conformity assessment procedure on their machines. By affixing the CE mark the manufacturer confirms that plant or machinery meet all the necessary health and safety requirements of the Machinery Directive 2006/42/EC. The Machinery Directive is the benchmark for plant and machinery safety within the EU. It specifies a standardised safety level and so guarantees the free movement of goods.

Step 1: Risk assessment as the key to machinery safety

In the internal European market, there is an obligation for machine manufacturers only to supply safe products to its customers. As a result, a machine manufacturer must carry out a risk assessment under the terms of the Machinery Directive. Contents of the risk assessment include:

  • Identify the applicable harmonised standards and regulations
  • Define the machine's limits
  • Identify all the risks in each of the machine's lifecycle phases
  • Estimate and assess the risk
  • Recommend an approach for reducing risk

The risk level is identified based on the probability of occurrence and the degree of possible harm.

Step 2: Create the safety concept

The safety concept describes the technical measures and guarantees the safety of your machines in accordance with applicable national and international harmonised standards. A good safety concept maintains a balance between safeguards and productivity.

Among other things, the safety concept considers the use of fixed and movable guards, systems for stopping plant and machinery, options for safely shutting down the electrical power as well as liquids and gases under pressure, and the detection of workers in danger zones.

Continues … Part 2 of the series will be available here shortly, covering the issue of Safety design and the selection of safety components.

Further information:

Risk assessment

Safety concept


Safe machinery, step-by-step: Risk assessment and safety concept
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Pilz Australia Safe Automation
Unit 1, 12-14 Miles Street
Mulgrave, Melbourne, Victoria 3170

Telephone: +61 3 9560 0621