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A new Framework on Health and Safety at work is about to see the day in Europe on horizon 2020

02 October 2014

A change that could impact all OSH actors over the continent. This prospect offers a unique occasion to go behind the scene and discover how industrials actively participate to the elaboration of European standards.

Marianne Rodot is Technical Manager at Mapa Professionnel, one of the top players in safety protection solutions for hands. As part of her mission, she makes a contribution to the evolution of European standards. But how does the process work? ‘’First of all, a pre-work item is proposed on a specific protection issue in relation with the PPE Directive, to become a standard. The tests methods and requirements of this standard draft are thus discussed and defined among the experts of the working group within the CEN Technical Committee’’.

Sometimes, it is necessary to check the validity of the test methods through interlaboratory studies. Then, as soon as adopted, the new harmonized standard is used by notified bodies in the CE certification process of the concerned PPE. ‘’At Mapa Professionnel, we really are experts in the design and implementation of new standards since wee have long experience is participating to these working groups and interlaboratory works. And this helps when creating new products – more protective and functional – that meet our client needs.’’

Of course, this process impacts all manufacturers, forcing them to consider these new standards and adapt their product design. For their part, H&S managers’ have to get acquainted with these new specifications as well, to ensure right selection and usage of the PPE. The manufacturers involved in standardization work also play a decisive role in explaining the standards to the distributors and end-users.