Don’t spill the beans! How safe is your coffee machine?

Jul 23, 2018

Coffee machines are now very popular not only at home but in the workplace. They should be inspected at least once every 14 months once they are more than 12 months old.

This is a requirement of the Pressure Systems Safety Regulations 2000.

Pressure systems safety

If pressure equipment fails to operate correctly it can seriously injure or kill people nearby, and severely damage property.

Accordingly, the regulations impose a duty on employers to provide a safe workplace and work equipment.

What equipment is covered by the regulations?

Examples of pressure systems and equipment are:

  • boilers and steam heating systems
  • pressurised process plant and piping
  • compressed air systems (fixed and portable)
  • pressure cookers, autoclaves and retorts
  • pressure gauges and level indicators
  • coffee machines that produce steam under pressure

What are the main causes of incidents?

  • poor maintenance of equipment
  • poor equipment and system design
  • an unsafe system of work
  • operator error, poor training/supervision
  • poor installation
  • inadequate repairs or modifications

The Pressure Systems Safety Regulations 2000 require pressure systems to be inspected in accordance with a Written Scheme of Examination. The Regulations apply to owners and users of systems containing ‘relevant fluids’, (which include steam, gases under pressure and any fluids kept artificially under pressure and which become gases when released into the atmosphere). If a boiler operates at 100°C and over, it comes under the Pressure Systems Safety Regulations.

(In addition, the Regulations cover refrigeration and air conditioning plants with compressor motors which exceed 25kW, or where the total installed power exceeds 25kW.)

Following an assessment, a Written Scheme of Examination must be drawn up by a competent person and must include a definition of the items included in the system and details of frequency of inspection. Inspection procedures normally include both a thorough examination (with the system being shut down and vessels opened up) and a working examination of the system under normal operation.

Yutree can help to organise the Written Scheme of Examination and Inspections, if required. You can of course arrange the WSE and inspections independently and insurers don’t need to do it or oversee it.

If you have any questions relating to how this affects your risk management programme please contact Yutree Insurance on 01638 660651

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