Skip to content

Click on each of the steps below to find out more

Join ATEC's Monthly Newsletter Now!

Subscribe and get the latest company news, information about our services, and marketing activities.


4. Dossier Creation & Review

A dossier is a must-have for hazardous areas, as it can be used as a compliance trail because it provides proof that equipment used in potentially explosive atmospheres is fully compliant and documented.

Without a comprehensive dossier, there could be no evidence to prove all equipment being used is properly specified and that it has been installed according to relevant standards and then inspected for compliance.

ATEC Inspection Teams collate all the required supporting documents, they make sure there is a master “clean” EX register, certificates for all equipment installed, area classification drawings, Electrical & Intrinsically safe design parameters, manufacturers supporting information.

Do you recognize the need for explosion protection?
Find out more about this service that ATEC offers here

✅ATEC The go-to company for hazardous area compliance around the world! 🌍

1. Training

Do you recognize the need for explosion protection?

Step number 1 to a compliant EX Life Cycle for Hazardous Areas is Training.

          ATEC provides training to ensure staff understands what Standards, Regulations, Directives & Codes are needed to ensure safety during operations in potentially explosive atmospheres. From beginner to advanced practitioners, ATEC has options for those who could be defined as operatives, designers, or responsible persons.

          ATEC regularly carries out training needs analysis for their corporate clients, creating competency matrices to allow teams to understand their specific duties and how these fit into safe operations.

           ATEC understands that learning styles can be different, so we offer a variety of course delivery options, in person and online. The ATEC E-Learning platform is self-led, allowing individuals to progress at their own pace to fit their personal schedule.

           ATEC can advise students on this first step of their EX Journey, visit our CompEx Course Selector or email us at

3. Design and Unit Verification

Step 3 to a compliant EX Life Cycle for Hazardous Areas is Design and Unit Verification with the purpose of ensuring that equipment to be installed in potentially explosive atmospheres is documented as safe & suitably certified for its area of use.

ATEC has certified, competent, experienced engineers who can analyze a design against the risk presented in a specified hazardous area and ensure all essential health and safety requirements are met and adequate certification is in place.

This helps our clients ensuring projects can confidently proceed to their purchasing phase.

Find out more about this service here!!


The go-to company for hazardous area compliance around the world! 🌍

6. Inspection in Hazardous Areas

Initial inspection validates that equipment meets Hazardous Area requirements and is correctly installed – Following this, periodic inspection is implemented to look for any damage, deterioration or unauthorised modifications

IEC60079-14.4.3 describes Initial inspection requirements to ensure equipment is installed in accordance with its documentation & that any replaceable items are of the correct type and rating. On completion of the erection and prior to first use, initial detailed inspection of the equipment and installation shall be carried out in accordance with Annex C, which is based on the “detailed” grade of inspection in IEC 60079-17.

The Basic Principles described in IEC 60079-17 are that before plant or equipment is brought into service, it shall be given an initial inspection. As part of the plant commissioning and start up procedures, initial inspection and other additional requirements are provided in IEC 60079-14.

To ensure that the installations are maintained in a satisfactory condition for continued use within a hazardous area, either

  1. a) regular periodic inspections, or
  2. b) continuous supervision by skilled personnel, and, where necessary, maintenance shall be carried out.

The Competencies described in IEC 60079-17 4.4.1 Personnel, state;
Regular periodic inspection requires personnel who are competent for the inspection required, including that they:

  • a) have a knowledge of area classification/EPL and sufficient technical knowledge to understand its implications for the location under consideration;
  • b) have technical knowledge and understanding of the theoretical and practical requirements for electrical equipment and installations used in those hazardous areas;
  • c) understand the requirements of visual, close and detailed inspections as they relate to the installed equipment and installations.

2. Hazardous Area classification

By analysing then classifying the environment to facilitate the prior selection of electrical (and in some case non-electrical) equipment, you will control the risk associated with equipment installation.

Area classification may be carried out by direct analogy with typical installations described in established codes, or by more quantitative methods that require a more detailed knowledge of the plant. The starting point is to identify sources of release of flammable gas or vapour. These may arise from constant activities; from time to time in normal operation; or as the result of some unplanned event. In addition, inside process equipment may be a hazardous area, if both gas/vapour and air are present, though there is no actual release.

Catastrophic failures, such as vessel or line rupture are not considered by an area classification study. A hazard identification process such as a Preliminary Hazard Analysis (PHA) or a Hazard and Operability Study (HAZOP) should consider these abnormal events.

The most commonly used standard for determining area extent and classification is IEC 60079 part 10.1, which has broad applicability. The current version makes clear the direct link between the amounts of flammable vapour that may be released, the ventilation at that location, and the zone number. It contains a simplistic calculation relating the size of zone to a rate of release of gas or vapour, but it is not helpful for liquid releases, where the rate of vaporisation controls the size of the hazardous area.

Other sources of advice, which describe more sophisticated approaches, are the Institute of Petroleum Model Code of Practice (Area Classification Code for Petroleum Installations), and the Institution of Gas Engineers Safety Recommendations SR25. The IP code is often for use by refinery and petrochemical type operations. The IGE code addresses specifically transmission, distribution and storage facilities for natural gas, rather than gas utilisation plant, but some of the information will be relevant to larger scale user.

5. Installation and maintenance of equipment

IEC60079-14 A.1 Provides guidance on the competencies required for different types of personnel

Installation is classed as by “operatives” who’s competencies can be listed as in

A.2.2 Operatives/technicians (selection and erection) shall possess, to the extent necessary to perform their tasks, the following:

  • understanding of the general principles of explosion protection;
  • understanding of the general principles of types of protection and marking;
  • understanding of those aspects of equipment design which affect the protection concept;
  • understanding of content of certificates and relevant parts of this standard;
  • general understanding of inspection and maintenance requirements of IEC 60079-17;
  • familiarity with the particular techniques to be employed in the selection and erection of
  • equipment referred to in this standard;
  • understanding of the additional importance of permit to work systems and safe isolation in
  • relation to explosion protection.

A.3.3 Operatives/technicians – Operatives/technicians shall be able to demonstrate their competency and provide evidence of attaining the knowledge and skill requirements specified in A.2.2 relevant to the types of protection and/or types of equipment involved.

They shall also be able to demonstrate their competency with documentary evidence in the:

  1. a) use of documentation
  2. b) production of reports, e.g. inspection reports
  3. c) practical skills necessary for the preparation and installation of relevant concepts of protection

d) use and production of installation records