7 July, 2022

Boardroom Report - Challenges and opportunities

11 February, 2021

I was surprised how keenly our own office closures and openings were followed and commented upon while we endeavoured to give lead and be the proverbial ‘Goldilocks’.”

Jones explains that BCAS contributes to numerous standards and legislative bodies both in the UK and in Europe, and provides regular updates to its members and the wider industry on best practice and regulations. “For many years, BCAS has been the secretariat for many standards’ committees, producing technical standards for our industry on a broad range range of products and services,” she says. “BSI and ISO, for example, depend on industry participation to ensure these standards are balanced, workable and add value and we continue to work well with our partners towards global consolidation of standards. However, an area that concerns us is the risk of divergence in legislation and directives between the UK and the EU during the transition period. In some areas, this divergence is deliberate, such as the UK Government’s desire to provide more stretching targets for the Eco design directive than our European counterparts. In other areas, we may see a slippage in alignment. For example, the machinery directive is being reviewed in Europe currently, but this work will be concluded after the UK has left the EU, leading to, at best, a potential timing difference – or more crucially, a difference in approach and implementation. At this point in time, it is not clear how the Government intends to address this issue. However, one thing that is clear is that BCAS will continue to work diligently to identify and track these areas of concern for our members.”

One other area that has concerned BCAS during the Coronavirus pandemic is to ensure best practice guidance regarding the treatment, quality and maintenance of compressed air continues to be followed. “The BCAS technical helpline has received an increasing number of enquiries during the Coronavirus pandemic from end-users concerned that their compressed air supply is adequately protected and seeking advice to ensure that there can be no risk from airbourne contaminants,” explains Jones. “To assist, users are advised to refer to BCAS’s free guides, which can be downloaded from the website at www.bcas.org.uk, including BPG102 for compressed air purity and BPG104 for best practice advice on the filtration and drying of compressed air.”

Risk factor

Buxton believes health & safety is one of those areas where enough is never enough. “It often boils down to practicality and return on cost,” he says. “Life is risky. Where we draw the line of acceptable risk is ever changing and can take step-changes in the event of a serious and well-publicised accident. Fortunately, whilst fluid injection injuries are particularly unpleasant, the industry statistics are still good compared to many industrial sectors. However, this is not an excuse for complacency and as the Trade Association for the sector we continually strive to provide a platform for members to improve both their safety record and the training of operatives. The BFPA Hose Assembly Scheme and its associated training are a good example of this.”

Gunter explains that Abdex has joined Stichting Industriële Reiniging [Industrial Cleaning Foundation] (SIR), the organisation dedicated to promoting and regulating safe working in industrial cleaning situations in applications within the Netherlands and Belgium. SIR serves as an example of how effective self-regulation can be as regards safety in a particular sector. “For many years, Abdex has been selling product into Europe and we wanted to secure SIR certification in order to further enhance our strong portfolio,” says Gunter. “Abdex is fully certified by Parker Polyflex for HP and UHP up to 4000 bar

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