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Brexit latest: Guidance for products falling under EU directives

Published on: 07 February 2019

CE and Wheel Mark

CE and the Wheel Mark

British Marine has previously highlighted the preparations that boat builders should be undertaking to ensure that, should there be a ‘no deal’ Brexit, they are prepared. This article will highlight the other areas of the marine industry in which a ‘no deal’ Brexit will affect the certification of other products.

European certification affects a significant number of products manufactured by companies within the marine sector, each of these products will have a number of regulations and/or directives applicable to them. For example, whilst the Recreational Craft Directive (RCD) covers the manufacture of small craft for recreational use, there are also a number of other directives that cover small craft and their components:

  • Electromagnetic compatibility directive (EMC)
  • Low voltage directive
  • Machinery directive
  • Appliances burning gaseous fuels directive

RCD annex II components also require individual certification with notified body third party verification, fuel hoses, prefabricated hatches, fuel tanks for fixed installations and steering wheels & steering components are within this annex.

The Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) regulation is one that will require the third-party verification of certain equipment produced and placed on the EU market. The PPE regulation classifies products into risk categories, complex design products relating to drowning are within Category III and apply to life jackets. These products require third party verification and manufacturers will have to ensure that they contact their Notified Body (NB) (if UK based) to understand the process to ensure continued EU validity.

The Marine Equipment Directive (MED) is another regulation that, should there be a 'no-deal' Brexit, needs manufacturers to modify their processes ensure and their ability to still place products on the EU market. Crucially the MED. also requires under clause 13 “a manufacturer located outside the Union should appoint an authorised representative in order to ensure cooperation with competent national authorities.” This will require UK manufacturers of MED equipment to not only review their notified bodies status but also set up an authorised representative within the EU.

New approach directives have a number of requirements for the design, manufacture, certification and distribution within their text. It is imperative that UK manufacturers assess the relevant regulations that apply to the products that they export to the EU and assess the changes that they will need to prepare for should a 'no-deal' Brexit occur.

These include:

  • Waste electrical and electronic equipment directive
  • Radio equipment directive
  • Electromagnetic compatibility directive
  • Appliances burning gaseous fuels directive
  • The ATEX Directive
  • Personal protective equipment regulations
  • Machinery directive

For further information please contact the technical department at