Machinery Directive

[custom_headline type=”left” level=”h2″ looks_like=”h3″ accent=”false”]Machinery Directive[/custom_headline]

Number: 2006/42/EC

Official Title:
Directive 2006/42/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 May 2006 on machinery, and amending Directive 95/16/EC

The Machinery Directive (with the official reference number 2006/42/EC) covers the safety aspects of machinery, but also safety components, ropes, chains, etc : mechanical design, electrical design, controls, safety, and the potential for the machinery to create hazardous.

The Machinery Directive defines which products fall within its field of application, it provides the essential requirements that machinery and other equipment covered by it must comply with, and it outlines the conformity assessment procedure the manufacturer must apply in order to ensure compliance with the essential requirements.


[custom_headline type=”left” level=”h3″ looks_like=”h5″ accent=”false”]Which Products Are Covered By The Machinery Directive?[/custom_headline]

The Machinery Directive (2006/42/EC) covers machinery that are match the definition provided in the directive:

[icon_list_item type=”check”]an assembly, fitted with or intended to be fitted with a drive system other than directly applied human or animal effort, consisting of linked parts or components, at least one of which moves, and which are joined together for a specific application[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”check”]an assembly referred to in the first indent (above), missing only the components to connect it on site or to sources of energy and motion[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”check”]an assembly referred to in the first and second indents (above), ready to be installed and able to function as it stands only if mounted on a means of transport, or installed in a building or a structure[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”check”]assemblies of machinery referred to in the first, second and third indents (above) or partly completed machinery (also a defined term, see below) which, in order to achieve the same end, are arranged and controlled so that they function as an integral whole[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”check”]an assembly of linked parts or components, at least one of which moves and which are joined together, intended for lifting loads and whose only power source is directly applied human effort[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”check”]thus products missing only the electric motor, requiring mounting (eg a hydraulic lifting arm) onto a vehicle or structure / building), or to be assembled with others are all regarded as machinery in the strict sense.[/icon_list_item]

Other types of equipment that are within the scope of the Machinery Directive are:

[icon_list_item type=”check”]’interchangeable equipment’ means a device which, after the putting into service of machinery or of a tractor, is assembled with that machinery or tractor by the operator himself in order to change its function or attribute a new function, in so far as this equipment is not a tool[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”check”]’safety component’ means a component: which serves to fulfil a safety function, which is independently placed on the market, the failure and/or malfunction of which endangers the safety of persons, and which is not necessary in order for the machinery to function, or for which normal components may be substituted in order for the machinery to function. An indicative list of safety components is set out in Annex V link to external website, which may be updated in accordance with Article 8(1)(a)[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”check”]’lifting accessory’ means a component or equipment not attached to the lifting machinery, allowing the load to be held, which is placed between the machinery and the load or on the load itself, or which is intended to constitute an integral part of the load and which is independently placed on the market; slings and their components are also regarded as lifting accessories[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”check”]’chains, ropes and webbing’ means chains, ropes and webbing designed and constructed for lifting purposes as part of lifting machinery or lifting accessories[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”check”]’removable mechanical transmission device’ means a removable component for transmitting power between self-propelled machinery or a tractor and another machine by joining them at the first fixed bearing. When it is placed on the market with the guard it shall be regarded as one product[/icon_list_item]

One further class of products that are almost machinery are brought into scope of the Directive, but they are treated slightly differently to “machinery” as defined above:

‘partly completed machinery’ means an assembly which is almost machinery but which cannot in itself perform a specific application. A drive system is partly completed machinery. Partly completed machinery is only intended to be incorporated into or assembled with other machinery or other partly completed machinery or equipment, thereby forming machinery to which this Directive applies

In the case of partly completed machinery it must not be supplied CE marked and instead of a Declaration of Conformity must be accompanied by a Declaration of Incorporation. It must also be supplied with instructions for its safe incorporation in an assembly with other machinery, partly completed machinery or equipment to form a machine. The person / organisation undertaking the final incorporation / assembly process to form the final machine then becomes the manufacturer of the complete product. As such they have to meet the requirements of the Directive, apply the CE mark and issue a Declaration of Conformity for the complete machine or assembly.


[custom_headline type=”left” level=”h3″ looks_like=”h5″ accent=”false”]Which Products Are Not Covered By The Machinery Directive?[/custom_headline]

Excluded from the Machinery Directive are:

[icon_list_item type=”times”]safety components intended to be used as spare parts to replace identical components and supplied by the manufacturer of the original machinery[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”times”]equipment for use in fairgrounds and amusement parks[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”times”]certain means of land and sea transport (mostly covered by other Directives or international maritime law)[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”times”]certain electrical equipment such as household appliances for domestic use, audio and visual equipment, IT equipment, ordinary office machinery and electric motors (covered by the Low Voltage Directive instead)[/icon_list_item]

Other machines covered by other Directives are also excluded, for example:
[icon_list_item type=”times”]lifts meeting the Lifts Directive 95/16/EC (as amended by 2006/42/EC PDF link to external website),[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”times”]cableways meeting the Cableways Directive 2000/9/EC, and[/icon_list_item]
[icon_list_item type=”times”]machinery which is also a medical device so subject to the Medical Devices Directive 93/42/EC (as amended), although those machinery EHSRs that are relevant are “called up” by the Medical Devices Directive.[/icon_list_item] [/icon_list]


[custom_headline type=”left” level=”h3″ looks_like=”h5″ accent=”false”]How to Comply with the Machinery Directive:[/custom_headline]

Basically, the Machinery Directive offers two ways to perform conformity assessment:

1. Internal Production Control or CE marking self-certification: the manufacturer performs the conformity assessment and documents the assessment in his own right.
2. Involvement of a Notified Body: For higher risk machinery (listed in Annex IV to the Machinery Directive), for which no European harmonized standards are available, or for which the manufacturer did not apply these standards, the manufacturer is required to involve a third party certification body, or so-called ‘Notified Body’.

The following machines are listed on Annex IV of the Machinery Directive, and this means that for these machines it is mandatory to involve a Notified Body in the conformity assessment if the manufacturers has not used (all) European harmonised standards:
1. Circular saws (single- or multi-blade) for working with wood and material with similar physical characteristics or for working with meat and material with similar physical characteristics, of the following types:
1.1. sawing machinery with fixed blade(s) during cutting, having a fixed bed or support with manual feed of the work- piece or with a demountable power feed;
1.2. sawing machinery with fixed blade(s) during cutting, having a manually operated reciprocating saw-bench or carriage;
1.3 sawing machinery with fixed blade(s) during cutting, having a built-in mechanical feed device for the workpieces, with manual loading and/or unloading;
1.4. sawing machinery with movable blade(s) during cutting, having mechanical movement of the blade, with manual loading and/or unloading.
2. Hand-fed surface planing machinery for woodworking.
3. Thicknessers for one-side dressing having a built-in mechanical feed device, with manual loading and/or unloading for woodworking.
4. Band-saws with manual loading and/or unloading for working with wood and material with similar physical characteristics or for working with meat and material with similar physical characteristics, of the following types:
4.1. sawing machinery with fixed blade(s) during cutting, having a fixed or reciprocating-movement bed or support for the workpiece;
4.2. sawing machinery with blade(s) assembled on a carriage with reciprocating motion.
5. Combined machinery of the types referred to in points 1 to 4 and in point 7 for working with wood and material with similar physical characteristics.
6. Hand-fed tenoning machinery with several tool holders for woodworking.
7. Hand-fed vertical spindle moulding machinery for working with wood and material with similar physical characteristics.
8. Portable chainsaws for woodworking.
9. Presses, including press-brakes, for the cold working of metals, with manual loading and/or unloading, whose movable working parts may have a travel exceeding 6 mm and a speed exceeding 30 mm/s.
10. Injection or compression plastics-moulding machinery with manual loading or unloading.
11. Injection or compression rubber-moulding machinery with manual loading or unloading.
12. Machinery for underground working of the following types:
12.1. locomotives and brake-vans;
12.2. hydraulic-powered roof supports.
13. Manually loaded trucks for the collection of household refuse incorporating a compression mechanism.
14. Removable mechanical transmission devices including their guards.
15. Guards for removable mechanical transmission devices.
16. Vehicle servicing lifts.
17. Devices for the lifting of persons or of persons and goods involving a hazard of falling from a vertical height of more than three metres.
18. Portable cartridge-operated fixing and other impact machinery.
19. Protective devices designed to detect the presence of persons.
20. Power-operated interlocking movable guards designed to be used as safeguards in machinery referred to in points 9, 10 and 11.
21. Logic units to ensure safety functions.
22. Roll-over protective structures (ROPS).
23. Falling-object protective structures (FOPS).


[custom_headline type=”left” level=”h3″ looks_like=”h5″ accent=”false”]European Harmonised Standards Related to Machinery Directive 2006/42/EC:[/custom_headline]

Coming Soon…


[custom_headline type=”left” level=”h3″ looks_like=”h5″ accent=”false”]The Latest Related Blog Posts About the Machinery Directive:[/custom_headline]

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