Assignment of Classification for Transport of Fireworks

Below is a letter to all holders of fireworks classifications.

This letter describes the outcomes of the review of the period of validity of Competent Authority Documents for fireworks commissioned by Dr Daniels (HMCIE), provides an update on turnaround times and includes Dave Adams’ ‘top tips’ for complete applications:

CEMHD7 – Letter to CAD Holders – Period of Validity – 31st March 2016

Explosives Regulations 2014 – subsector guidance

The Professional firework display operator sub-sector guidance to support ER2014, has now been published on the HSE website:

 This,  and the other recently published sub-sector guidance,  can be downloaded at:

Pyrotechnic Articles Regulations 2015 – Consultation Document

Two new European Directives in the UK – Directive 2013/29/EU which harmonises the obligations of economic operators and Directive 2014/58/EU which introduces new requirements to improve the traceability of pyrotechnic articles.

The draft regulations are included in the consultation document which may be viewed on the BIS website at:

If you wish to make comments the closing date of this consultation is Thursday 22nd January 2015.  There is a short summary below.

Christine Knox  – Assistant Director


What is this consultation about?

The consultation is about how the UK implements two new EU Directives on pyrotechnic articles – which include fireworks.

As the Directives have already been made, we can’t influence their contents.   But we do want to get the views of stakeholders on how we are implementing those Directives. We have set out a number of specific questions on which we are asking for responses.

We plan to get rid of the old pyrotechnic regulations (Pyrotechnic Articles (Safety) Regulations 2010) and replace them with a new set of regulations.  A draft of the new regulations is in the consultation document.

Who will be interested in it?

This consultation will be relevant to:

manufacturers, importers and distributors of pyrotechnic articles;
bodies involved in the conformity assessment of pyrotechnic articles (currently there are no such bodies in the UK); and enforcement authorities with responsibilities for pyrotechnic articles such as trading standards and the Health and Safety Executive

What are the main changes?

There will be new labelling requirements for manufacturers and importers and, along with distributors, they will also have to keep records of the registration number of articles, who they have sold pyrotechnic articles to and who has supplied them, for 10 years.  They will also have new obligations to take action over unsafe articles that they have put on the market.

Multilateral avtale M279

Please find below the derogation from the provisions of ADR, Annex B, UN 0335 and UN 0336 fireworks.M279 NORWAY


New COMAH Regulations 2015 come into force

Be prepared – 12 months until new COMAH Regulations 2015 come into force
New Control of Major Accident Hazards (COMAH) Regulations will come into force in Great Britain on 1 June 2015. The main COMAH duties will stay the same as now but there are some important changes particularly on how dangerous substances are classified and information that has to be made available to the public. For the first time, lower tier operators will have to provide public information about their site and its hazards. Both top tier (now referred to as upper tier) and lower tier operators will need to provide public information electronically and keep it up to date.

Steps you can take in the next 12 months to help you prepare include:
• Be involved in the consultation – get a good indication of how you may be affected by looking at the draft new COMAH Regulations 2015. Have your say – the consultation closes on 27 June
• Check whether your COMAH status is likely to change (in or out of scope, upper or lower tier)by referring to Schedule 1 of the draft Regulations to see the hazard categories and named dangerous substances that are in scope and their quantities, and then compare to your substance inventory. You will need to convert your inventory from CHIP classification to CLP. Guidance on classification is available at
• Be aware that all COMAH operators are likely to have to send a new notification to the Competent Authority (CA) by 1 June 2016; the updated information includes CLP categories of dangerous substances and more detail about site surroundings (draft Regulation 6). More information will follow on this shortly
• Consider what new information may need to be included in major accident prevention policies and off-site emergency plans (draft Regulations 7 and 12)
• Start putting plans in place for your summary of public information that will be provided electronically by looking at what information will be required (draft Regulation 16). The CA is planning to provide an IT system to host this information, more detailed guidance on this will follow
• Review draft Regulation 9 setting out the requirements and timescales for submission of Safety Reports and consider what new information may be required.
• Note that upper tier operators will still have to prepare public information zone (PIZ) information as now (draft Regulation 17).

In the next 12 months the CA will help you prepare by:
• Making guidance available for upper tier operators who are reviewing safety reports before June 2015 on what new information will need to be included after June 2015. If operators chose to, the new information can be included in advance thereby avoiding the need to update safety reports when the new Regulations come into force. This guidance should also be useful for all upper tier operators to indicate what new information will be required
• Publishing a response to the consultation document in Autumn 2014 to say how we will take the new Regulations forward
• Publishing guidance on the new Regulations in March 2015
• Aiming to launch the IT system for public information in advance of the Regulations coming into force.
• Updating the Seveso and COMAH pages on HSE’s website. We will develop the list of FAQs from questions submitted to the email enquiry account

BIS Guidance on Pyrotechnic Article (Safety) Regulations 2010

The Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS – formerly DTI) have published revised guidance on the Pyrotechnic Article (Safety) Regulations 2010.

There are very significant changes in BIS’s interpretation, particularly in respect of transitional provisions, and we urge you to look at the guidanc and take necessary action as soon as possible.

EIG Guide to the Carriage of Explosives (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012

With the adoptionof the Carriage of Explosives (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012, this guide brings to a satisfactory conclusion a long period of negotiation and sustained work by EIG, to bring about such a significant change in Explosives Legislation – the effort to achieve which has been very worthwhile, given the forthcoming and anticipated benefits to all BPA Members affected by the explosives classification processes.

ICoP for Northern Ireland can be downloaded here.

The version applicable to the remainder of the UK is available here

HSE/Industry guidance on UN Series 6 tests

Guidance on the UN series 6 tests for classification is now available at

HCB in fireworks

Question 1.

When did the Industry become aware of the issue of Hexachlorobenzene (HCB) in Fireworks?

Answer 1.

HCB was used extensively in fireworks for many years as chlorine donor to enhance colour; latterly being largely replaced in this function by other types of chlorine donors.  The first time, in recent years, the Industry became aware of the use of HCB, was in September 2008, following the discovery of this compound by HSL, as part of a routine testing of fireworks.

Question 2.

Is it well known issue amongst the Industry?

Answer 2.

Following the HCB ‘discovery’ in 2008, knowledge of the problem spread rapidly throughout the Firework Industry. Fortunately, most Companies found that their fireworks did NOT contain HCB. The passage of this knowledge then was extended by the EA  questionnaire at a later date. EIG presumes that all firework Importers were included on the distribution of this Questionnaire; accordingly we would expect that all such Companies in existence at that time, would have been well aware of the problem.  EIG also understands that the Explosives Inspectorate (ExI)regularly checks for the presence of HCB in their Classification of new fireworks.  The issues of HCB have also been widely aired at a European level.

Question 3.

What are the general thoughts about the issue throughout the Industry?

Answer 3.

The requirements and demands of the Persistent Organic Pollutants Regulations 2007, leave no scope for thought on the matter; in that Industry accepts that articles containing HCB, are simply not permitted to be supplied.  It should be noted however that the use of HCB in fireworks may not present the same environmental  threat as its use in other forms of device.  Fireworks typically burn at temperatures in excess of 1000 deg C in an oxygen rich environment; under which conditions we would expect HCB to be completely chemically reacted in the functioning of the firework.


UK Legislation

There’s lots of legislation that applies to professional firework display here in the UK, and often it can seem mind-boggling and never-ending! Here’s a guide to some of the major pieces of law that are relevant to firework displays.

Manufacture and Storage of Explosives Regulations 2005
These regulations cover the storage of explosives (and also their manufacture), and include things like licensing, storage conditions and fire prevention.

Health and Safety At Work Act 1974
The Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 , also referred to as HASAW or HSW, is the primary piece of legislation covering occupational health and safety in the United Kingdom.

Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road and Use of Transportable Pressure Equipment Regulations 2009
Covers the carriage of fireworks (and other dangerous goods) by road in the UK

ADR 2009
ADR is the European Regulations that cover the carriage of dangerous goods by road (including fireworks), parts of which apply in the UK and other parts cover Europe in general.

The Classification and Labelling of Explosives Regulations 1983
These regulations cover explosive (including firework) classification and the required labelling.

Fireworks Act 2003
Enabling legislation that allows the Secretary of State to create new firework laws.

Firework Regulations 2004
Sets specific hours during fireworks may be used at various times of the year, types of fireworks that are banned for sale to the public, and makes it an offence to possess Category 4 fireworks unless a professional.