Further clampdown on EU major accidents law

Commission to send final warnings to three more states for failure to transpose 1996 directive

The European Commission is to send reasoned opinions to another three EU member states alleging failure to transpose the 1996 "Seveso II" directive on major accident hazards. Aimed at Belgium, Germany and the UK, the final warnings before court action can be launched bring to 11 the number of countries now subject to infringement actions on the directive. A further six decisions to send reasoned opinions were announced only last October (ENDS Daily 18 October 1999).

The Seveso II directive updates a 1982 law passed after a notorious industrial accident in Italy. The directive requires all establishments where large quantities of dangerous substances are present that could create a major accident to comply with safety and hazard prevention requirements. The deadline for member states to transpose the new rules into national law and communicate this fact to the Commission was February 1999.

Follow Up:
A European Commission press release dated 28/1/00, (IP/00/87) is posted on Rapid.

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