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The Control of Electromagnetic Fields at Work Regulations 2016

Arc Welding is one example of EMF in the workplace.
  • Comes in to force 1st July 2016.
  • HSE Guidance in Draft (HSG 281).
  • Currently managed under the Management of Health & Safety at Work Regs.
  • These regulations specific to risks from occupational exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMFs).

New regulations targeting the risks from occupational exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMFs) are expected to come in to force from 1st July 2016.

Until these regulations, the risks of working with or around electromagnetic fields had been managed as part of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999.

However this new legislation introduces specific thresholds of EMF, and requires manager to assess the EMF that employees are exposed to.

Examples of EMF Equipment & Activities

EMF can be found, to some degree, in almost all work environments including offices, manufacturing plants, construction sites and hospitals.

Including:

  • MRI Scanners.
  • Electro–magnetic cranes.
  • Arc Welding.
  • Electric vehicles.
  • Broadcasting & TV antennas.
  • Radar & radio transmitters

EMF Risk Management

Those with Occupational Health & Safety responsibilities should begin by identifying where EMF occurs in the workplace, including both where it is constantly present and in relation to temporary work activities; termed an “exposure assessment” within in the regulations.

Where the assessment find EMF outside the thresholds or Action Levels in the schedule of the legislation (http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2016/588/schedule/made), the employer must implement an ‘Action Plan’ to reduce the exposure.

However regardless of the levels of exposure, it is good practice to conduct an EMF risk assessment and consider controls that can reduce or mitigate the associated risks.

The regulations make provision for information and training, which should be provided to “employees who are likely to be subjected to the risks identified in the most recent risk assessment”.

More information on The Control of Electromagnetic Fields at Work Regulations 2016

Read the DRAFT HSE Guidance here:
http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/books/hsg281.htm

Full Text of the Regulations Here:
http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2016/588/contents/made