CE Compliance Authentication

CECompliancemarkThe familiar CE mark stands for Conformité Européenne; it means that the product, item or component to which it is affixed is compliant with the relevant EU legislation in respect to health, safety and the environment and, therefore, can be sold throughout the European Economic Area (EEA). Unlike some otherC E mark v china export country marks, it is not a safety certification mark, nor does it mean the item was made in Europe. Nor should it be confused with the China Export mark which bares striking (purposeful?) similarities.

The idea is to harmonize market requirements throughout the EU and so, by indicating a product’s compliance, enable the free movement of products throughout the EEA.

To achieve the CE mark manufactures need to (i) design a product to meet the relevant standards, and (ii) provide a Declaration of Conformity (DoC). Never-the-less, it is the manufacturer himself, or his authorised representative, who, after the relevant conformity assessment has been undertaken, affixes the mark.

It is in this verification process, resulting in a technical file and a DoC, for electrical and hydraulic systems’ equipment, where KGAL’s professionals can help. Whilst there are some products which need to meet very specific European directives (and, therefore, verified in the UK by specialist notifiable bodies such as the BSI, Lloyds, Qinetiq and TÜV SÜV BABT among others) KGAL can provide authentication services in almost all other areas.

This is especially true in the case of the Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008, the Construction Products Regulations 2013 and products which fall under the 2009 Machinery Directive and its hierarchy of standards. It supersedes a previous directive and its verification and risk assessment obligations now apply to machinery powered by water and to partially completed machine parts, or machines which, to work productively, need to be assembled to other machines where a Declaration of Incorporation, addressing essential health and safety requirements, replaces a DoC (see picture caption below).

Despite the ubiquity of the CE mark, achieving its status for sophisticated assemblies can be a very complicated process. For example, the directive applies not just to the item, product or machine, but to sales literature and the contents of instructions in any supporting manual, and verifies “the conditions in which the machinery meets the requirements of stability during use, transportation, assembly, dismantling and testing for foreseeable breakdowns”.

You can find out more about the CE mark (including the structures to which it doesn’t apply) by visiting the Health and Safety Executive’s website, or call us for an initial chat to explore the issues and how our own professional experience can best assist you.

It's uncertian to what extent the UK's 2016 proposal to leave the EU will have on future observance of the CE requirement. SInce the process itself, if adopted, will take at least two years to implement the mark will remain pertinent for the foreseeable future.

The images show two Canadian electric trucks which, following chasis strengthening, were fitted with hydraulic power units and winches for emergncy use (gate opening) at Cumberland Lock, Bristol, England. KGAL specified the components and subsequently provided the Declaration of Incorporation. Centre stage is KGAL's senior engineer, Jasper Taylor.