| ||Editorial: European standardization: the OH&S community’s scope for influence
Personal involvement on the part of OH&S delegates on the relevant standards committee is seen to offer the greatest scope for influencing a standard. A KAN study to be completed shortly confirms the observation that this also holds true for international standardization activity. For KAN, which has the specific function of representing stakeholders who do not possess the resources for direct involvement, it is also important however that the other means available at the various phases of standards development are exploited to the full. The article describing the development of a European standard discusses this aspect.
| ||Exclusive networks: a growing trend
In April 2005, a German business magazine reported on the increasing popularity of Internet networks. Such networks link people with common interests and objectives. Conditions for entry guarantee a closed community which more readily facilitates the exchange of information and confidential discussions with like-minded people than do open networks with large numbers of users and a bewildering range of topics.
| ||Creation of a European standard
When a European standard (EN) is adopted, it must also be transposed unchanged at national level. Participation in the relevant national mirror committee constitutes an effective means of influencing the substance of European standards. The mirror committee sends delegate experts to the European standards committees, formulates comments at national level upon European draft standards, and monitors the standards creation process, which takes place at a number of levels.
| ||EN 420 not yet mature: new test specifications for chromate await confirmation
The EN 420 standard governing protective gloves has been available since 2003. As yet, however, it has not been added by the European Commission to the catalogue of harmonized standards pursuant to the PPE Directive, since the detection limit which it specifies for the chromate content of leather gloves is too high. Test methods for assured detection of lower concentrations must therefore be validated at the earliest opportunity.
| ||New Machinery Directive to be adopted shortly
On 5 April 2005, the official language versions of the new Machinery Directive were adopted under the Luxembourg EU Presidency. Adoption was the culmination of a total of 39 sessions held by the Council’s ”Technical Harmonisation (Machinery)” working party in 2001-2004. Over four years of Council deliberations were thus brought to a successful conclusion.
| ||A good shower is half the battle: emergency safety showers for laboratory use
Emergency safety showers in laboratories are an essential facility for the event of accidents involving fire or contamination with acids, alkalis and solvents. In expert circles in Germany, doubts are however being raised that the requirements of the European draft standard prEN 15154-1 governing efficient emergency safety showers are suitable for practical implementation and will enhance safety within laboratories.
| ||Formal objection to EN 13000, Mobile cranes
Together with the institutions for statutory accident insurance and prevention in the vehicle operating trades and in the mechanical engineering and metalworking industry, KAN has successfully launched a formal objection to EN 13000, Mobile cranes.
| ||KAN web site barrier-free
KAN has redesigned its Internet presence to make it barrier-free. Contrary to the prejudice that barrier-free web pages are ”boring”, the design of KAN’s pages is now even more attractive and userfriendly than it was before. Elements which increase loading times and restrict the choice of browser have been eliminated.
| ||Polish version of the KAN web site now online
A range of information on KAN (”Komisja Ochrony Pracy i Normalizacji”) can now be accessed in Polish at www.kan.de. All six main subject areas (”Presentation”, ”News”, ”Activities”, ”Basic documents”, ”Infonet” and ”Publications”) are available in Polish.
| ||TUTB becomes ETUI-REHS
On 1 April 2005, the Trade Union Technical Bureau for Health and Safety (TUTB) at the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC), the European Trade Union Institute (ETUI) and the European Trade Union College (ETUCO), merged to form a new body, the ETUI-REHS (European Trade Union Institute for Research, Education and Health and Safety).
| ||Publications, Internet