Changes are being made to some of the fundamental standards relating to machine safety, and Laidler Associates is warning machine builders and OEMs to start making preparations to accommodate these changes.
The standards affected are:
- ISO 12100-1:2003 Safety of machinery. Basic concepts, general principles for design. Basic terminology, methodology
- ISO 12100-2:2003 Safety of machinery. Basic concepts, general principles for design. Technical principles
- ISO 14121-1:2007 Safety of machinery. Risk assessment. Principles
These standards are being superseded and replaced by a new standard, designated EN ISO 12100:2010 Safety of machinery. General principles for design. Risk assessment and risk reduction (the equivalent standard in the UK will be BS EN ISO 12100). Changes to other standards will follow.
All of the standards involved, old and new, are Type A standards and, as such, underpin the design of all machines that are intended to be supplied and used in Europe.
Change but no change
In essence, the requirements of the three existing standards are being consolidated into one new standard, with no changes to the requirements themselves. It has also been made clear that documentation for machines already in use, referring to the existing standards, will not need to be revised. However, documentation for machines supplied after the change has taken place must refer to the latest standard.
Paul Laidler of Laidler Associates comments: "Since the requirements themselves are not changing, it might seem that machine builders and OEMs do not need to concern themselves about the introduction of ISO EN 12100:2010, but that is not quite true. Though the requirements will not change, the numbering relating to them certainly will, which means that any documentation that refers to individual requirements will have to be revised accordingly, if it is to be supplied with new machines.
"This will particularly affect companies with machines in series production, and companies that are currently designing machines that will not be supplied until after the new standard comes into force. We would strongly suggest that these companies take note of the impending changes now and prepare for them, rather than waiting till the last minute. And, of course, if assistance is needed in making the changes, Laidler Associates will be pleased to provide it."
To help users make the transition to the new standard, ISO/TC 199, the Technical Committee that prepared the new standard, has published a document entitled Table of correspondence between ISO 12100-1:2003, ISO 12100-2:2003,ISO 14121-1:2007 and the new ISO 12100:2010 (which can be downloaded from the CEN website as a 275kB PDF). This shows the changes to clause numbers and where minor changes have been made to, for example, improve the wording or extract material from the body for use as notes.
While no date has yet been announced for the publication of BS EN ISO 12100:2010 in the UK, the process is well underway [BS EN ISO 12100:2010 was published on 31 December 2010 - Ed]. The ISO version of the new standard has been harmonised and it has been published in its ISO and EN forms.