May 27, 2020
It is very important to understand the mandatory requirements and applicable Australian Standards (AS) if you opt to acquire a high-pressure vessel in Australia. It is to not only ensure your equipment is safe to operate, but also avoid fines that may come with non-compliance to Australia’s current safety laws and legislation. Below are reason why you should choose a code compliant high pressure vessel manufacturer in Australia.
High Pressure Vessel Basics
A pressure vessel is a container or vessel that holds a fluid, either a gas or liquid, which is subject to internal or external pressure. Pressure vessels includes the interconnected parts and components, valves, gauges and other fittings up to the first point of connection to the pipe work. The design code for pressure vessels, AS1210 requires every pressure vessel to be protected by a relief device that prevents the vessel pressure from rising more than 110% of the vessel’s design pressure.
This pressure relief device must be inspected annually and recalibrated at the same time as the internal inspection frequency of the pressure vessel or five years, whichever is the lessor. Every pressure vessel has a Hazard Level ranging from a Hazard Level A, being the most hazardous to a Hazard Level E being the least hazardous. Hazard Levels are determined using the criteria in AS4343-Pressure Equipment-Hazard Levels. Factors that influence a pressure vessels Hazard Level include: design pressure (P), volume (V), contents, location and fluid temperature
Compliance Requirements / Design Registration
According to most states current safety legislation, every pressure vessel with a Hazard Level A, B, C or D must be design registered with a regulatory authority with responsibility for plant safety e.g. WorkSafe WA, NSW WorkCover, SafeWork SA etc.
You are breaking the law if you operate pressure equipment with a Hazard Level A, B, C or D without the current design registration and significant penalties up to $62,500 may apply depending upon which state legislation you fall under. Only design registration numbers issued within Australia by a regulatory authority are acceptable. A design registration number is mandatory if your pressure vessel has a Hazard Level A, B, C or D.
Individual Registration / Deregistration of Equipment
In addition to the design registration all pressure equipment with a Hazard Level A, B or C must be individually registered with the states regulatory authority with responsibility for plant safety in the state where the pressure equipment is located. Renewal of individual plant registration is set out by each states regulatory authority and is typically annually. Vessel owners must ensure that pressure equipment is correctly registered with the relevant states regulatory authority facing fines for non-compliance. The regulatory authority must also be informed if the unit is relocated or decommissioned. Contact AME to find out which legislation you fall under.
Equipment Inspection and Maintenance Requirements
Failing to inspect pressure equipment in accordance with the applicable Regulations may subject you to fines. It’s the pressure vessel owner’s responsibility to ensure all pressure equipment in use is certified as “Safe to Operate” and registered with the appropriate regulatory authority within your state.
Fusion - Weld Engineering Pty Ltd
ABN 98 068 987619
1865 Frankston Flinders Road,
Hastings, VIC 3915
Ph: (03) 5909 8218
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