Edition 2.1 - July 2017
(Update of 2nd Edition)
Directive 2006/42/EC is a revised version of the Machinery Directive, the first version of which was adopted in 1989. The new Machinery Directive has been applicable since 29th December 2009. The Directive has the dual aim of harmonising the health and safety requirements applicable to machinery on the basis of a high level of protection of health and safety, while ensuring the free circulation of machinery on the EU market. The revised Machinery Directive does not introduce radical changes compared with the previous versions. It clarifies and consolidates the provisions of the Directive with the aim of improving its practical application.
While the revised Machinery Directive was being discussed by the Council and the European Parliament, the Commission agreed to prepare a new Guide to its application. The purpose of the Guide is to provide explanations of the concepts and requirements of Directive 2006/42/EC in order to ensure uniform interpretation and application throughout the EU. The Guide also provides information about other related EU legislation. It is addressed to all of the parties involved in applying the Machinery Directive, including machinery manufacturers, importers and distributors, Notified Bodies, standardisers, occupational health and safety and consumer protection agencies and officials of the relevant national administrations and market surveillance authorities. It may also be of interest to lawyers and to students of EU law in the fields of the internal market, occupational health and safety and consumer protection.
It should be stressed that only the Machinery Directive and the texts implementing its provisions into national law are legally binding.
The Guide is published on the Commission’s Website EUROPA in English. This updated Edition 2.1 is intended to be a living document, edited and updated with new guidance once approved by the Machinery Working Group. It will be made available in other EU languages, but only the English version will be checked by the Commission. Therefore, in case of doubt, the English version should be taken as the reference.
The Guide can be downloaded and is presented in a printable format. The text of the Directive is presented in boxed red italic type - the comments follow in black type.
The Guide has been prepared with the help of an Editorial Group2 and this Update of the 2nd Edition has been carried out by an external consultant and the Commission, assisted by some of the members of the Editorial Group. The Commission4 wishes to warmly thank the members of the Editorial Group both for the huge amount of work they have carried out as well as for the efficient, constructive and cooperative spirit in which the drafts have been prepared. In parallel to the work of the Editorial Group, a Machinery Core Group established by Orgalime, including representatives of the main sectors of machinery manufacturing, has provided invaluable input from the industry. The drafts prepared by the Editorial Group have been submitted to the Member States and stakeholders for comments. The Commission would also like to thank all those who have made comments. We have tried to take them into account as far as possible.
European Commission 2017