Major Hazard Control

High risks associated with hazardous substances

There are high health and safety risks associated with the production, storage and handling of hazardous substances. Therefore companies that work with hazardous substances must limit the risks as much as possible.

Prevention of major accidents at Seveso establishments

Seveso establishments (previously known as Brzo companies) are companies that work with large quantities of hazardous substances. If something goes wrong at these companies, there could be major consequences. These companies must therefore take specific measures to limit the risks of major accidents involving hazardous substances.

The aim of the strict rules that apply to Seveso companies is: 'The prevention of serious accidents that have a severe impact on people, the surroundings, the environment and infrastructure'. The rules, together with their attendant measures, are also intended - in the event of things going wrong - to limit the consequences of a serious accident as much as possible.

In the Netherlands Seveso establishments are held under the supervision of a number of supervisory authorities, working together in BRZO+. The Netherlands Labour Authority is one of these authorities.

Supplementary Risk Inventory and Evaluation

Companies that produce, store, or handle lower quantities of hazardous substances, but where similar risks are present as with the Seveso establishments, must adhere to similar rules to prevent major accidents. These companies are obliged to periodically carry out a so-called 'Supplementary Risk Inventory and Evaluation' (Aanvullende Risico-Inventarisatie en -Evaluatie, abbreviated: ARIE).

Some of the Seveso establishments are also included under the obligations of the Supplementary Risk Inventory and Evaluation, because they also work with hazardous substances that are included in this regulation.

All companies must check for themselves whether they are included under the Supplementary Risk Inventory and Evaluation.

Exposure to hazardous substances at Brzo companies

The Netherlands Labour Authority supervises healthy and safe working with hazardous substances. The need to supervise is clear: working with hazardous substances can lead to illness or even dead in the long term. This is also an important topic at Brzo companies.

Regular supervision – to prevent major accidents – at Brzo companies is carried out by various supervisory authorities, one of which is the Netherlands Labour Authority. In recent years, the Netherlands Labour Authority has carried out additional inspections at Brzo companies for the risk of exposure to hazardous substances. You will read some results of this inspection project in our publication Exposure to hazardous substances at Brzo companies.